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Future U.S. Policy and Action: The Justice Department's Approach to Terrorism

NCJ Number
Terrorism Volume: 11 Issue: 6 Dated: (1988) Pages: 553-557
V Toensing
Date Published
5 pages
The U.S. Department of Justice's concern with terrorism focuses on laws and extradition, participation in interagency work groups and task forces, and international cooperation.
The 1984 Crime Bill gave the Justice Department the ability to prosecute hostage-taking outside the United States. The Department, however, still has legal difficulties in removing aliens who participate in terrorist activities from the United States. This problem is aggravated by the large number of illegal aliens. Better extradition legislation is needed to insure terrorists who commit acts against the United States are returned to this country to stand trial for violating U.S. law. The political offense exception once complicated the extradition process, but this exception has been eliminated in the case of terrorism. Now there is a humanitarian exception; the United States cannot ask for extradition based on a person's race, religion, or national origin. If terrorists cannot be returned to the United States via extradition, the Justice Department is not opposed to "luring" them. The Department will continue with bilateral and multilateral operations and treaties with other countries to thwart terrorist actions.