April 29, 2011

Jenner & Block’s New York office was recently honored by the Center for Constitutional Rights with CCR’s Pro Bono Service Award.  The award was presented at the nonprofit legal organization’s 2011 President’s Reception on April 27, 2011, at the Manhattan Penthouse in New York. 

Referring to Jenner & Block as “an invaluable ally in the struggle for justice,” the award was given in recognition of the New York office’s “overall pro bono partnership with the Center on groundbreaking legal matters.” 

Specifically, the Firm’s representation of the Center as amicus curiae in the case of United States v. Ahmed Ghailani and of Majid Khan as co-counsel with CCR, was highlighted at the award ceremony.  Mr. Ghailani was recently convicted in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for offenses related to the 1998 embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania; Mr. Khan is a “High Value Detainee” in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, who was taken into CIA custody in 2002 and subjected to torture at the hands of the United States government. 

As amicus in the Ghailani case, the Jenner & Block team authored a brief arguing that pre-trial delay violated the accused’s statutory and constitutional rights to a speedy trial.  While the District Court ultimately ruled in favor of the government (and Mr. Ghailani was subsequently tried, found guilty and sentenced to life in prison), the Court, in its opinion, specifically thanked CCR for its assistance in analyzing the difficult legal issues involved.  Further, the speedy trial issue will likely be a central issue in Mr. Ghailani’s appeal.

Mr. Khan has been held at Guantanamo for four years and seven months and spent several years in a CIA “black site” before being transferred to Guantanamo.  His representation raises legal issues relating to his claims that he was subjected to torture while in CIA custody.

Jenner & Block Partners Brian J. Fischer, Katya Jestin, and Andrew Weissmann; Associates Eric P. Brown, Kelly D. Gardner, Colleen A. Harrison, Eddie A. Jauregui, Paul M. Monteleoni, and Prashant Yerramalli, and former Associate Daniel B. Tehrani have devoted many pro bono hours to these cases and others on behalf of CCR.