Case: Benkahla v. Federal Bureau of Prisons

2:09-cv-00025 | U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana

Filed Date: Jan. 21, 2009

Closed Date: 2010

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On January 21, 2009, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Indiana filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, under 42 U.S.C. 1983, against the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The complaint challenged the creation of housing units inside federal prisons in which prisoners lived in isolation from the outside world. Plaintiffs alleged that these cells, called Communication Management Units (CMUs) and designed to house prisoners viewed by the governme…

On January 21, 2009, the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Indiana filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, under 42 U.S.C. 1983, against the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The complaint challenged the creation of housing units inside federal prisons in which prisoners lived in isolation from the outside world. Plaintiffs alleged that these cells, called Communication Management Units (CMUs) and designed to house prisoners viewed by the government as terrorists, were established in violation of federal laws requiring public notice and opportunity to comment on policy, and were disproportionately used to house Muslim prisoners.

The plaintiff Sabri Benkahla was abducted at gunpoint by Saudi Arabian police and transferred to America in custody of the FBI the night before his wedding. Benkahla was charged with supplying services to the Taliban and further using a firearm in violent crime. The U.S. District Court Judge Leonie Brinkema found him not guilty, but the government forced him to testify in front of a grand jury a month later. Benkahla was convicted of perjury and sentenced to 121 months in prison in a CMU.

Following this, a motion on July 27, 2009 to add parties was filed, and Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Harley G. Lappin and Joyce K. Conley were added in their official capacities. In the same motion, all pending claims against defendants B.R. Jett, Paul McNulty, Unknown Employees of Correctional Programs Divisions of the Federal Bureau of Prison, Les Smith, T.R. Henry, S Julian T. Coleman, and Agent Grass were dismissed. Further on July 27, 2009, an amended complaint was filed that declared the Defendants violated the Administrative Procedure Act by establishing the Terre Haute CMU and issuing the Terre Haute CMU Institution Supplement and Institution Supplement - Visiting Regulations without notice and comment rulemaking. Subsequently on September 14, 2009, all defendants were dismissed aside from the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

On July 28, 2010, plaintiff filed a motion to dismiss. This case was dismissed on July 29, 2010 without prejudice in the Southern District of Indiana. On August 9, 2010 a Third Party Continuing Petition to Intervene was filed on behalf of similarly situated prison inmates, and this was denied on October 20, 2010 because it was untimely and the court found that their interests are not in common with plaintiff. There is no reason to conclude this case is ongoing.

Summary Authors

Kristen Sagar (6/23/2009)

Christina Bonanni (11/18/2013)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attrorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4266405/parties/benkahla-v-federal-bureau-of-prisons/


Judge(s)

Lawrence, William T. (Indiana)

Lynch, Debra McVicker (Indiana)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Falk, Kenneth J. (Indiana)

Shapiro, David M. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Kieper, Thomas E (Indiana)

McCoskey, William Lance (Indiana)

Judge(s)

Lawrence, William T. (Indiana)

Lynch, Debra McVicker (Indiana)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Falk, Kenneth J. (Indiana)

Shapiro, David M. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Kieper, Thomas E (Indiana)

McCoskey, William Lance (Indiana)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

2:09-cv-00025

Docket [PACER]

Benkahla v. Jett

Dec. 13, 2010

Dec. 13, 2010

Docket
1

2:09-cv-00025

CIVIL COMPLAINT AND PETITION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS

Jan. 8, 2009

Jan. 8, 2009

Complaint
20

2:09-cv-00025

Amended Complaint

Benkahla v. Jett

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

Complaint
67

2:09-cv-00025

Order (Dismissing Case Without Prejudice)

Benkahla v. Jett

July 29, 2010

July 29, 2010

Order/Opinion

Resources

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4266405/benkahla-v-federal-bureau-of-prisons/

Last updated Aug. 2, 2022, 3:04 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link
1

Complaint

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

RECAP
1

Complaint

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

RECAP
1

Complaint

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

RECAP
2

Entry

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

PACER
2

Entry

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

PACER
2

Entry

Jan. 21, 2009

Jan. 21, 2009

PACER
3

Entry

Feb. 12, 2009

Feb. 12, 2009

PACER
3

Entry

Feb. 12, 2009

Feb. 12, 2009

PACER
3

Entry

Feb. 12, 2009

Feb. 12, 2009

PACER
4

Letter

Feb. 25, 2009

Feb. 25, 2009

PACER
4

Letter

Feb. 25, 2009

Feb. 25, 2009

PACER
4

Letter

Feb. 25, 2009

Feb. 25, 2009

PACER
5

Entry

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
5

Entry

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
5

Entry

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
6

Receipt

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
6

Receipt

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
6

Receipt

May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009

PACER
7

Entry

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
7

Entry

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
7

Entry

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
8

Motion for Extension of Time

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
8

Motion for Extension of Time

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
8

Motion for Extension of Time

May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009

PACER
9

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

May 12, 2009

May 12, 2009

PACER
9

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

May 12, 2009

May 12, 2009

PACER
9

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

May 12, 2009

May 12, 2009

PACER
10

Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
10

Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
10

Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
11

Receipt

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
11

Receipt

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
11

Receipt

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
12

Motion for Extension of Time

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
12

Motion for Extension of Time

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
12

Motion for Extension of Time

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
13

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
13

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
13

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009

PACER
14

Order on Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 15, 2009

May 15, 2009

PACER
14

Order on Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 15, 2009

May 15, 2009

PACER
14

Order on Motion to Appear pro hac vice

May 15, 2009

May 15, 2009

PACER
15

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

June 5, 2009

June 5, 2009

PACER
15

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

June 5, 2009

June 5, 2009

PACER
15

Order on Motion for Extension of Time to File

June 5, 2009

June 5, 2009

PACER
16

Notice of Appearance

June 17, 2009

June 17, 2009

PACER
16

Notice of Appearance

June 17, 2009

June 17, 2009

PACER
16

Notice of Appearance

June 17, 2009

June 17, 2009

PACER
17

Motion (Other)

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
17

Motion (Other)

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
17

Motion (Other)

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
18

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
18

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
18

Brief/Memorandum in Support of Motion

June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009

PACER
19

Order on Motion

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

PACER
19

Order on Motion

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

PACER
19

Order on Motion

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

PACER
20

Amended Complaint

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

RECAP
20

Amended Complaint

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

RECAP
20

Amended Complaint

July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

RECAP
21

Entry

July 31, 2009

July 31, 2009

PACER
21

Entry

July 31, 2009

July 31, 2009

PACER
21

Entry

July 31, 2009

July 31, 2009

PACER
24

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 6, 2009

Aug. 6, 2009

PACER
24

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 6, 2009

Aug. 6, 2009

PACER
24

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 6, 2009

Aug. 6, 2009

PACER
22

Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
22

Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
22

Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
23

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
23

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
23

Summons Issued as to USA

Aug. 11, 2009

Aug. 11, 2009

PACER
25

Entry

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
25

Entry

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
25

Entry

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
26

Order on Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
26

Order on Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
26

Order on Motion to Amend/Correct

Aug. 13, 2009

Aug. 13, 2009

PACER
27

Notice (Other)

Aug. 21, 2009

Aug. 21, 2009

PACER
27

Notice (Other)

Aug. 21, 2009

Aug. 21, 2009

PACER
27

Notice (Other)

Aug. 21, 2009

Aug. 21, 2009

PACER
28

Summons Returned Executed as to USA

Aug. 24, 2009

Aug. 24, 2009

PACER
28

Summons Returned Executed as to USA

Aug. 24, 2009

Aug. 24, 2009

PACER
28

Summons Returned Executed as to USA

Aug. 24, 2009

Aug. 24, 2009

PACER
29

Entry

Aug. 26, 2009

Aug. 26, 2009

PACER
29

Entry

Aug. 26, 2009

Aug. 26, 2009

PACER
29

Entry

Aug. 26, 2009

Aug. 26, 2009

PACER
30

Entry

Sept. 14, 2009

Sept. 14, 2009

PACER
30

Entry

Sept. 14, 2009

Sept. 14, 2009

PACER
30

Entry

Sept. 14, 2009

Sept. 14, 2009

PACER
31

Letter

Sept. 16, 2009

Sept. 16, 2009

PACER
31

Letter

Sept. 16, 2009

Sept. 16, 2009

PACER
31

Letter

Sept. 16, 2009

Sept. 16, 2009

PACER
32

Notice of Appearance

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
32

Notice of Appearance

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
32

Notice of Appearance

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
33

NOTICE of Parties' First Extension of Time

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
33

NOTICE of Parties' First Extension of Time

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
33

NOTICE of Parties' First Extension of Time

Sept. 23, 2009

Sept. 23, 2009

PACER
34

Motion to Dismiss

Nov. 17, 2009

Nov. 17, 2009

RECAP

Case Details

State / Territory: Indiana

Case Type(s):

Prison Conditions

Special Collection(s):

Multi-LexSum (in sample)

Key Dates

Filing Date: Jan. 21, 2009

Closing Date: 2010

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

prisoners being held in secret housing units inside federal prisons

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

ACLU National Prison Project

ACLU Affiliates (any)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Federal Bureau of Prisons, Federal

Department of Justice, Federal

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.

Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Non-settlement Outcome

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

Litigation

None

Form of Settlement:

Voluntary Dismissal

Issues

General:

Classification / placement

Conditions of confinement

Phone

Visiting

Type of Facility:

Government-run