Justice Dept. Tells 4th Circuit Court of Progress in Sex Predator Backlog


The Justice Department assured a federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., Thursday that it is making “a lot of progress” in clearing up a backlog of cases in which it seeks to indefinitely detain accused sexual predators, reports USA Today. The paper reported in March that the department’s effort to lock up accused predators after the end of their sentences has been fraught with long delays and questionable medical determinations that kept dozens of men incarcerated without a trial for as long as five years even though they did not meet the requirements for detention.

Fourth Circuit judges have said that they are concerned by the long delays in handling those cases and have suggested that they could threaten the defendants’ constitutional due process rights. During two hearings, Justice Department attorney Ian Samuel told the judges that those cases are “moving through the pipeline” and that the process for deciding who should remain in prison is “moving toward the sort of system that Congress and the BOP (Bureau of Prisons) always envisioned.”

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