5 plaintiffs represented by ACLU in Jeppesen case: will their stories finally be heard?
In 2007, the ACLU filed a federal lawsuit against Jeppesen DataPlan, Inc., a subsidiary of Boeing Company, on behalf of five victims of the United States government's unlawful "extraordinary rendition" program. The suit charges that Jeppesen knowingly participated by providing critical flight planning and logistical support services to aircraft and crews used by the CIA to forcibly disappear these five men to detention and interrogation. Shortly after the suit was filed, the government intervened and inappropriately asserted the "state secrets privilege," claiming further litigation would undermine national security interests, even though much of the evidence needed to try the case was already available to the public. In April 2009, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower court dismissal of the case, ruling that the government must invoke the state secrets privilege with respect to specific evidence, not to dismiss the entire suit. The case is remanded back to district court, providing the first opportunity for Bush-era torture victims to have their day in court.
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