Case: Al-Aulaqi v. Panetta

1:12-cv-01192 | U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

Filed Date: July 18, 2012

Closed Date: April 4, 2014

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

In July 2012, Plaintiffs, representing the estates of their respective children, filed suit in United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States and Department of Defense officials in their personal capacities. Represented by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights, the plaintiffs alleged that the United States directed and authorized missile strikes resulting in citizens' deaths abroad, in violation of the Fifth and Fourth A…

In July 2012, Plaintiffs, representing the estates of their respective children, filed suit in United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States and Department of Defense officials in their personal capacities. Represented by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights, the plaintiffs alleged that the United States directed and authorized missile strikes resulting in citizens' deaths abroad, in violation of the Fifth and Fourth Amendments and the Bill of Attainder Clause.

The defendants moved to dismiss the case in December 2012 under several theories precluding judicial review, including lack of standing, separation of powers concerns, the presence of non-justiciable political questions, and qualified immunity of the federal officials. The district court scheduled oral arguments for July 2013. Meanwhile, the district court took judicial notice of a New York Times article by Charlie Savage, U.S. Admits for First Time Drones Killed 4 Americans, N.Y. Times, May 22, 2013, and requested briefing on how the statements of the Attorney General of the United States affected the legal issues in the case.

On April 4, 2014, the Court granted Defendants' motion to dismiss, due heavily to special factors that precluded a cause of action under Bivens. The Court found no Fourth Amendment claim because there was no actual seizure of the decedents. The Court found no Fifth Amendment claim for two of the Plaintiffs because their deaths were unanticipated, which amounted only to negligence and not a violation of Fifth Amendment substantive due process rights. The Court stated the claim against the third decedent appeared plausible as the death was not unintended. The Court then found that applying Bivens in this case would be inappropriate, as it would be an unprecedented application of Bivens which would "draw the Court into 'the heart of executive and military planning and deliberation'" because the Court would have to examine national security policy, military chain of command, and operational combat decisions. Al-Aulaqi v. Panetta, 35 F. Supp. 3d 56, 77 (D.D.C 2014), quoting Lebron v. Rumseld, 670 F.3d 540, 550 (D.C. Cir. 2012). The Court finally found that Bill of Attainder claim was unfounded as Plaintiffs could point to no legislative action. 35 F. Supp. 3d 56.

The case is now closed.

Summary Authors

Elizabeth Homan (11/1/2013)

Cade Boland (3/19/2018)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4211625/parties/al-aulaqi-v-panetta/


Judge(s)

Collyer, Rosemary M. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Jaffer, Jameel (New York)

Kaufman, Brett Max (New York)

Kebriaei, Pardiss (New York)

Lahood, Maria Couri (California)

Shamsi, Hina (New York)

Spitzer, Arthur (District of Columbia)

Wessler, Nathan Freed (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Werner, Paul Elias (District of Columbia)

Judge(s)

Collyer, Rosemary M. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Jaffer, Jameel (New York)

Kaufman, Brett Max (New York)

Kebriaei, Pardiss (New York)

Lahood, Maria Couri (California)

Shamsi, Hina (New York)

Spitzer, Arthur (District of Columbia)

Wessler, Nathan Freed (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Werner, Paul Elias (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket

June 3, 2014 Docket
3

Complaint

2012 WL 3024212

July 18, 2012 Complaint

U.S. Acknowledges Killing Four Americans in Drone Strikes

[NA]

No Court

May 22, 2013 Press Release
26-1

[Correspondence] Exhibit 1

May 22, 2013 Correspondence
26-2

Exhibit 2 (Remarks by the President on the Future of Our Fight Against Terrorism)

No Court

May 23, 2013 Transcript
36

Memorandum and Opinion

April 4, 2014 Order/Opinion

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4211625/al-aulaqi-v-panetta/

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

MOTION for Leave to File COMPLAINT WITHOUT LISTING THEIR HOME ADDRESSES by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (rdj) (Entered: 07/23/2012)

July 18, 2012 RECAP
2

ORDER granting 1 Motion for Leave to File COMPLAINT WITHOUT LISTING THEIR HOME ADDRESSES. Signed by Judge John D. Bates on July 18, 2012. (rdj) (Entered: 07/23/2012)

July 18, 2012 PACER
3

COMPLAINT against WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON EDWARD PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL ( Filing fee $ 350, receipt number 4616050207) filed by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet)(rdj) (Entered: 07/23/2012)

1 Civil Cover Sheet

View on PACER

July 18, 2012 RECAP
4

RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed as to the United States Attorney. Date of Service Upon United States Attorney on 7/23/2012. Answer due for ALL FEDERAL DEFENDANTS by 9/21/2012. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of service of process on U.S. Attorney)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 07/23/2012)

July 23, 2012 PACER
5

MOTION for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice :Attorney Name- Hina Shamsi, :Firm- American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, :Address- 125 Broad Street, 18th floor, New York, NY 10004. Phone No. - 212-284-7321. Fax No. - 212-549-2654 by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Hina Shamsi, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 07/27/2012)

July 27, 2012 PACER
6

MOTION for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice :Attorney Name- Jameel Jaffer, :Firm- American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, :Address- 125 Broad Street, 18th floor, New York, NY 10004. Phone No. - 212-519-7814. Fax No. - 212-549-2654 by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Jameel Jaffer, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 07/27/2012)

July 27, 2012 PACER
7

MOTION for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice :Attorney Name- Maria LaHood, :Firm- Center for Constitutional Rights, :Address- 666 Broadway, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10012. Phone No. - (212) 614-6430. Fax No. - (212) 614-6499 by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Maria LaHood, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 07/27/2012)

July 27, 2012 PACER
8

MOTION for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice :Attorney Name- Pardiss Kebriaei, :Firm- Center for Constitutional Rights, :Address- 666 Broadway, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10012. Phone No. - (212) 614-6452. Fax No. - (212) 614-6499 by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Pardiss Kebriaei, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 07/27/2012)

July 27, 2012 PACER
9

NOTICE of Appearance by Paul Elias Werner on behalf of All Defendants (Werner, Paul) (Entered: 09/19/2012)

Sept. 19, 2012 PACER
10

NOTICE of Statement of Request for Correction to Docketed Response Date by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON C. PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL (Werner, Paul) (Entered: 09/19/2012)

Sept. 19, 2012 PACER
11

ENTERED IN ERROR.....NOTICE of Filing of Proof of Service of Process upon David Petraeus by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Affidavit Service of Process upon David Petraeus, # 2 Exhibit Return Receipt)(Kebriaei, Pardiss) Modified on 10/23/2012 (rdj). (Entered: 10/22/2012)

Oct. 22, 2012 PACER
12

ENTERED IN ERROR.....NOTICE of Filing of Proof of Service of Process upon Leon Panetta, William McRaven and Joseph Votel by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Affidavit Service of Process upon Leon Panetta, William McRaven and Joseph Votel, # 2 Exhibit Return Receipt)(Kebriaei, Pardiss) Modified on 10/23/2012 (rdj). (Entered: 10/22/2012)

Oct. 22, 2012 PACER
13

RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed on United States Attorney General. Date of Service Upon United States Attorney General 08/01/2012. (Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 10/22/2012)

Oct. 22, 2012 PACER
14

RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed. DAVID PETRAEUS served on 10/15/2012 (rdj) (Entered: 10/23/2012)

Oct. 22, 2012 PACER
15

RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed. WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN served on 10/12/2012; LEON C. PANETTA served on 10/12/2012; JOSEPH VOTEL served on 10/12/2012 (rdj) (Entered: 10/23/2012)

Oct. 22, 2012 PACER
16

STIPULATION Regarding Service of Process on Defendants and Agreed Date for Responsive Pleading by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Kebriaei, Pardiss) (Entered: 10/23/2012)

Oct. 23, 2012 RECAP
17

MOTION for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice :Attorney Name- Brett M. Kaufman, :Firm- American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, :Address- 125 Broad Street, New York, NY 10004. Phone No. - 212.549.2603. Fax No. - 212.549.2654 by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Brett Kaufman, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Spitzer, Arthur) (Entered: 11/20/2012)

Nov. 20, 2012 PACER
18

MOTION to Dismiss by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Werner, Paul) (Entered: 12/14/2012)

1 Text of Proposed Order

View on PACER

Dec. 14, 2012 RECAP
19

NOTICE Statement of Interest by UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit (1) Clapper Declaration, # 2 Exhibit (2) Gates Declaration, # 3 Exhibit (3) Panetta Declaration, # 4 Exhibit (4) AG Memo)(Werner, Paul) (Entered: 12/14/2012)

Dec. 14, 2012 PACER
20

Joint MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply re 18 MOTION to Dismiss, by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Kebriaei, Pardiss) Modified on 12/20/2012 to edit event and create relationship(dr). (Entered: 12/20/2012)

Dec. 20, 2012 RECAP
21

Memorandum in opposition to re 18 MOTION to Dismiss filed by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order, # 2 Declaration of Pardiss Kebriaei)(Shamsi, Hina) (Entered: 02/05/2013)

1 Text of Proposed Order

View on PACER

2 Declaration of Pardiss Kebriaei

View on PACER

Feb. 5, 2013 RECAP
22

MOTION for Extension of Time to File Response/Reply as to 18 MOTION to Dismiss by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Werner, Paul) (Entered: 03/06/2013)

March 6, 2013 PACER
23

REPLY to opposition to motion re 18 MOTION to Dismiss filed by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL. (Werner, Paul) (Entered: 03/07/2013)

March 7, 2013 PACER
24

MOTION for Hearing re 18 MOTION to Dismiss by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Shamsi, Hina) (Entered: 03/22/2013)

March 22, 2013 RECAP
25

NOTICE of Hearing: Oral Argument set for 7/19/2013 at 10:00 AM in Courtroom 8 before Judge Rosemary M. Collyer. (cdw) (Entered: 03/28/2013)

March 28, 2013 PACER
26

RESPONSE TO ORDER OF THE COURT re MINUTE Order filed by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2)(rdj) (Entered: 06/06/2013)

1 Exhibit 1

View on RECAP

2 Exhibit 2

View on RECAP

June 5, 2013 RECAP
27

MOTION for Leave to File Reply to Defendants' Response to the Court's May 22, 2013 Order by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order Granting Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to File Reply to Defendants' Response to the Court's May 22, 2013 Order)(Shamsi, Hina) (Entered: 06/11/2013)

1 Text of Proposed Order Granting Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to File Reply

View on RECAP

June 11, 2013 RECAP
28

REPLY re 26 Response to Order of the Court filed by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Shamsi, Hina) (Entered: 06/11/2013)

June 11, 2013 PACER
29

NOTICE of Appearance of Brian Hauck on Behalf of the Defendants by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL (Werner, Paul) (Entered: 06/21/2013)

June 21, 2013 PACER
30

NOTICE of Probate Appointments by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN (rdj) (Entered: 07/18/2013)

July 17, 2013 PACER
31

TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS before Judge Rosemary M. Collyer held on 07/19/13; Page Numbers: 1-70. Date of Issuance:09/17/13. Court Reporter/Transcriber Crystal M. Pilgrim, Telephone number 202.354.3127, Court Reporter Email Address : crystalpilgrim@aol.com.For the first 90 days after this filing date, the transcript may be viewed at the courthouse at a public terminal or purchased from the court reporter referenced above. After 90 days, the transcript may be accessed via PACER. Other transcript formats, (multi-page, condensed, CD or ASCII) may be purchased from the court reporter.NOTICE RE REDACTION OF TRANSCRIPTS: The parties have twenty-one days to file with the court and the court reporter any request to redact personal identifiers from this transcript. If no such requests are filed, the transcript will be made available to the public via PACER without redaction after 90 days. The policy, which includes the five personal identifiers specifically covered, is located on our website at ww.dcd.uscourts.gov. Redaction Request due 10/8/2013. Redacted Transcript Deadline set for 10/18/2013. Release of Transcript Restriction set for 12/16/2013.(Pilgrim, Crystal) (Entered: 09/17/2013)

Sept. 17, 2013 RECAP
32

NOTICE OF SUPPLEMENTAL AUTHORITY by WILLIAM H. MCRAVEN, LEON PANETTA, DAVID PETRAEUS, JOSEPH VOTEL (Attachments: # 1 Court Opinion)(Werner, Paul) (Entered: 12/05/2013)

1 Court Opinion

View on PACER

Dec. 5, 2013 RECAP
33

RESPONSE re 32 NOTICE OF SUPPLEMENTAL AUTHORITY filed by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Kebriaei, Pardiss) (Entered: 12/10/2013)

Dec. 10, 2013 PACER
34

MOTION for Reconsideration and to Stay the Court's December 26, 2013, Order by UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Werner, Paul). Added MOTION to Stay on 1/10/2014 (jf, ). (Entered: 01/10/2014)

1 Text of Proposed Order

View on RECAP

2 Text of Proposed Order

View on RECAP

Jan. 10, 2014 RECAP
35

RESPONSE re 34 MOTION for Reconsideration and to Stay the Court's December 26, 2013, Order MOTION to Stay filed by NASSER AL-AULAQI, SARAH KHAN. (Shamsi, Hina) (Entered: 01/17/2014)

Jan. 17, 2014 RECAP
36

MEMORANDUM AND OPINION regarding 18 motion to dismiss. Signed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer on 4/4/2014. (KD) (Entered: 04/04/2014)

April 4, 2014 RECAP
37

ORDER denying as moot 34 United States' Motion for Reconsideration; granting 18 Defendants' Motion to Dismiss. The Complaint is dismissed. This case is closed. Signed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer on 4/4/2014. (KD) (Entered: 04/04/2014)

April 4, 2014 PACER
38

LEAVE TO FILE DENIED- Motion to Intervene as Plaintiffs with newly discovered evidence, Rule 24(A),24(B) This document is unavailable as the Court denied its filing.. Signed by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer on 6/3/14. (td, ) (Entered: 06/05/2014)

June 3, 2014 PACER

State / Territory: District of Columbia

Case Type(s):

National Security

Key Dates

Filing Date: July 18, 2012

Closing Date: April 4, 2014

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Plaintiffs are two parents who bring suit as the personal representative of the estates of their respective children, who were killed in United States missile strikes.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)

ACLU Affiliates (any)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

United States of America, Federal

David Petraeus, Federal

Leon Panetta, Federal

Joseph Votel, Federal

William H. McRaven, Federal

Defendant Type(s):

Law-enforcement

Jurisdiction-wide

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Ex Parte Young (Federal) or Bivens

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Unreasonable search and seizure

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Access to lawyers or judicial system

Courts

International law

Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues