CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Seton Hall Law Students Discover the Government Records Guantanamo Bay Interrogations

Seton Hall Law’s Center for Policy and Research has discovered new evidence of a longstanding government practice of recording interrogations at Guantánamo Bay. In light of the national debate about the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) destruction of video recordings, the report proves that the two CIA tapes that were destroyed were only a tiny fraction of perhaps 24,000 recorded interrogations.

A May 2005 report by Lieutenant General Kevin Kiley confirms that each interrogation at Guantánamo was videotaped. Lieutenant General Randall Schmidt issued a report the following month stating that more than 24,000 interrogations of detainees took place at Guantánamo over a three-year period. In the meantime, the Bush administration has announced it will pursue the death penalty for six detainees who will stand trial for crimes related to the attacks of September 11, 2001.

Professor Mark Denbeaux, Director of the Center for Policy and Research at Seton Hall Law, commented, “Our students proved that Guantánamo interrogations were videotaped, which impacts the impending trials of the six detainees. We all want to see the perpetrators of 9/11 punished. But if the tapes of those interrogations still exist, it is imperative that we understand, before these trials start, whether the information was obtained through standard interrogation procedures or through torture.”

Captured on Tape, the Center’s seventh Guantánamo Report, is based entirely on the government’s own documents, most of which were procured through Freedom of Information Act suits. The prior Reports have been cited by the Senate Armed Services Committee, the House Armed Services Committee, the House Appropriations Committee, and the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security; and introduced into the Congressional Record.

[Mark Godsey]

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