Unelucidating

04-Aug-2015 07:19

After Yunis was apprehended in international waters of the Mediterranean Sea and brought to the United States, a superseding indictment was filed on October 1, 1987 adding four additional counts—Counts VI, VII, VIII and IX. Lastly, two relevant statutes, the Hostage Taking Act, 18 U. Further, the Hostage Taking Act and Section 32(b) of the Aircraft Piracy Act impose liability for offenses allegedly committed by defendant. Several reputable treatises have also recognized the principles: L.

The Court also examines various principles of international law to determine whether they afford grounds for exercising jurisdiction over defendant. § 1203, and the several discrete provisions invoked under the Destruction of Aircraft Act, 18 U. After careful review of the pleadings, relevant case law, treatises, and oral argument of counsel, the Court concludes that consistent with reputable and generally accepted treatises and international law principles, there are sufficient grounds for asserting both subject matter and personal jurisdiction.

The government simply ignores a deliberate decision of Congress and urges a definition of foreign or overseas air commerce which directly contravenes the plain meaning and prevailing interpretation of these terms as defined in the Federal Aviation Act. By focusing solely on the passengers and their connection to United States soil no matter how remote, the government's definition makes almost every aircraft subject to regulation by the United States.

The government's definition focuses on the cumulative travels of a passenger or piece of cargo rather than the flightpath of the particular aircraft. Airline companies operating exclusively overseas which wanted to avoid such regulation would be forced to research the travel history of every potential passenger and then exclude any person who had every traveled to the United States.

He further claims that the presence of the American nationals on board the aircraft is an insufficient basis for exercising jurisdiction under principles of international law. Physical presence in United States territory is not a necessary element for exercising subject matter jurisdiction over that offense.

Defendant's motion raises several threshold inquiries: whether or not there is a basis for jurisdiction under international law, and if so, whether Congress intended to and had authority to extend jurisdiction of our federal courts over criminal offenses and events which were committed and occurred overseas and out of the territorial jurisdiction of such courts. Most courts, including our Court of Appeals, have adopted the Harvard Research designations on jurisdiction. Only after he stepped onto American soil was the defendant charged with aircraft piracy.

The hijackers then called an impromptu press conference and the defendant Yunis allegedly read a speech, which he originally intended to give to the delegates of the Arab League Conference then meeting in Tunis. The reliance that Yunis' counsel places on United States v. Indeed, the statute neither precludes nor approves the extension of jurisdiction over offenders who have been brought to this country by force.

In the original multi-count indictment of September 15, 1987, the United States charged Fawaz Yunis, a resident and citizen of Lebanon, for his alleged involvement in the hijacking of a Jordanian civilian aircraft in the Middle East. §§ 371, 1203, 32(a)(1), (2) and (5); Count II—seizing, detaining and threatening passengers and crew members, including three American nationals as hostages, in violation of 18 U. This criminal proceeding and indictment arise from the hijacking of a Jordanian civil aircraft, Royal Jordanian Airlines ("ALIA") Flight 402, on June 11, and 12, 1985. The Universal and the Passive Personal principle appear to offer potential bases for asserting jurisdiction over the hostage-taking and aircraft piracy charges against Yunis.

Defendant's motion to dismiss, presenting interesting and novel legal issues, challenges the authority for and the limits to which the United States government may extend its prosecutorial arm over certain crimes allegedly committed by a nonresident alien on foreign soil. §§ 1203; Counts III, IV and V—damaging, destroying, disabling and placing a destructive device upon an aircraft operating in foreign air commerce and committing acts of violence against aircraft personnel in violation of 18 U. The alleged offenses thereunder have no connection whatsoever to United States territory. D'Amato, International Law and World Order 564 (1980).

Its flightpath was limited to an area within and around the Mediterranean Sea. Once a defendant is brought within the jurisdiction of the Court he is subject to prosecution for all federal offenses.

Based on the absence of any nexus to United States territory, Yunis has moved to dismiss the entire indictment, arguing that no United States federal court has jurisdiction to prosecute a foreign national for crimes committed in foreign airspace and on foreign soil. Yunis was seized for alleged violation of the hostage taking statute.

The hijackers then called an impromptu press conference and the defendant Yunis allegedly read a speech, which he originally intended to give to the delegates of the Arab League Conference then meeting in Tunis. The reliance that Yunis' counsel places on United States v. Indeed, the statute neither precludes nor approves the extension of jurisdiction over offenders who have been brought to this country by force.

In the original multi-count indictment of September 15, 1987, the United States charged Fawaz Yunis, a resident and citizen of Lebanon, for his alleged involvement in the hijacking of a Jordanian civilian aircraft in the Middle East. §§ 371, 1203, 32(a)(1), (2) and (5); Count II—seizing, detaining and threatening passengers and crew members, including three American nationals as hostages, in violation of 18 U. This criminal proceeding and indictment arise from the hijacking of a Jordanian civil aircraft, Royal Jordanian Airlines ("ALIA") Flight 402, on June 11, and 12, 1985. The Universal and the Passive Personal principle appear to offer potential bases for asserting jurisdiction over the hostage-taking and aircraft piracy charges against Yunis.

Defendant's motion to dismiss, presenting interesting and novel legal issues, challenges the authority for and the limits to which the United States government may extend its prosecutorial arm over certain crimes allegedly committed by a nonresident alien on foreign soil. §§ 1203; Counts III, IV and V—damaging, destroying, disabling and placing a destructive device upon an aircraft operating in foreign air commerce and committing acts of violence against aircraft personnel in violation of 18 U. The alleged offenses thereunder have no connection whatsoever to United States territory. D'Amato, International Law and World Order 564 (1980).

Its flightpath was limited to an area within and around the Mediterranean Sea. Once a defendant is brought within the jurisdiction of the Court he is subject to prosecution for all federal offenses.

Based on the absence of any nexus to United States territory, Yunis has moved to dismiss the entire indictment, arguing that no United States federal court has jurisdiction to prosecute a foreign national for crimes committed in foreign airspace and on foreign soil. Yunis was seized for alleged violation of the hostage taking statute.

The parties agree that there are five traditional bases of jurisdiction over extraterritorial crimes under international law: These general principles were developed in 1935 by a Harvard Research Project in an effort to codify principles of jurisdiction under international law. Indeed, once he was within the boundaries of the United States, the government was obligated by statute and the Montreal Convention to prosecute him for destroying the aircraft. Toensing in stressing the importance of interpreting broadly the jurisdictional provisions stated in part: A key provision of the Aircraft Sabotage Act gives the U. criminal courts jurisdiction over persons sabotaging aircraft, even if a U. aircraft was not involved and the act was not within this country....