On April 8, 2010, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and the Alliance for Justice; American Civil Liberties Union; Amnesty International USA; Government Accountability Project; Japanese American Citizens League; National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; and Physicians for Human Rights submitted a memo to the U.S. Senate and Congress opposing any legislation authorizing or appropriating federal funds for the purchase of the Thomson Correctional Center in Thomson, Illinois. The groups, which all strongly support the closing of Guantanamo Bay, will oppose the purchase of the facility unless Congress enacts a permanent ban on using the Thomson prison for indefinitely detaining persons without charge or trial, or for holding persons during military commission trials or for serving sentences imposed by military commissions.
CCR has led the legal battle over Guantanamo for the last eight years – sending the first ever habeas attorney to the base and sending the first attorney to meet with a former CIA “ghost detainee” there. CCR has been responsible for organizing and coordinating more than 500 pro bono lawyers across the country in order to represent the men at Guantánamo, ensuring that nearly all have the option of legal representation. CCR represented the detainees with co-counsel in the most recent argument before the Supreme Court and is actively working to resettle Guantánamo’s refugees.
The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Founded in 1966 by attorneys who represented civil rights movements in the South, CCR is a non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.