Letter: Acts of tyranny
Thursday 21 January 1999
Counsel for General Noriega, the former Panamanian leader, argued that Noriega was immune from prosecution as a head of state and diplomat, and that his alleged narcotics offences constituted acts of state not properly reviewable by the court.
Judge Hoeveler, United States District Judge, commented that "the doctrine of head of state immunity provides that a head of state is not subject to the jurisdiction of foreign courts, at least as to official acts taken during the ruler's term of office.... Criminal activities such as the narcotics trafficking with which defendant is charged can hardly be considered official acts or governmental duties which promote a sovereign state's interests."
He concluded that, "Noriega was the de facto head of Panama's government. But simply because Noriega may have in fact run the country of Panama does not mean he is entitled to head of state immunity, since the grant of immunity is a privilege which the United States may withhold from any claimant.... His claim to a `right' of immunity against the express wishes of the government is wholly without merit."
It could likewise be argued that torture and conspiracy to torture do not constitute official acts or governmental duties.
Review: A panoramic account of the hacking scandalbooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Russell Brand accuses FOX News anchor Sean Hannity of terrorism after aggressive Israel-Gaza debate
- 2 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness – including don’t try to convert other people
- 3 Arturo Vidal to Manchester United: Midfielder set to force through move to Louis van Gaal's Red Devils - reports
- 4 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- < Previous
- Next >