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UK law lords consider use of evidence obtained through torture

[JURIST] Lawyers representing 10 terror suspects and 13 human rights groups, including Amnesty International [AI press release] and Human Rights Watch [HRW press release], appeared before Britain's House of Lords[official website] Monday arguing against a 2004 appeals court ruling [ABC report; JURIST report] allowing Special Immigration Appeals Commission [official website] tribunals hearing cases involving foreign terror suspects to consider evidence obtained by torture. Such evidence would not be admissible in a criminal court trial. The 2004 judgment [text] by the Court of Appeal for England and Wales allows the SIAC to hear evidence obtained by torture, provided it was not directly obtained by UK agents. Lawyers for the terror suspects currently being held in Britain without charge told the law lords Monday that allowing the use of evidence obtained by torture would be "an affront to the public conscience" and would serve as an incentive to the torturer "by making the act of torture worthwhile. The law lords are expected to hear arguments in the case for most of the week. Read Amnesty's Case for the Interveners on Appeal. BBC News has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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