Professor Patel & Students Attend Historic SCOTUS Argument in Abassi v. Aschroft

Pictured from L to R: Liz Pinolini, Professor Patel, Michelle Villegas, Alexandra Williams, Jani Loyo Ramos, and Rupalee Rashatwar.


Students enrolled in Professor Sunita Patel’s Migrants in the Criminal Justice System course lined up at 4:00 am last week to attend the historic U.S. Supreme Court argument in Abassi v. Ashcroft. The case challenged conditions of confinement following the post 9/11 round-ups and detentions of South Asian and Arab Muslim men. The plaintiffs were held in the most restrictive confinement available and subjected to repeated strip searches, racial epithets and abuse. The argument addressed pleading requirements, availability of Bivens as a remedy, and qualified immunity.  As a staff attorney with the Center for Constitutional Rights, Prof. Patel served as co-counsel in the district court and Second Circuit, prior to the case going to the Supreme Court. Following the argument, students met counsel for Respondents with the Center for Constitutional Rights. 

The group wrote about their experience for the blog ImmProf – read their reflections here