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Monday, August 04, 2014

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit posts one, decided Aug. 1st

In Webster v. Caraway, Warden (SD Ind., Lawrence), an 11-page opinion, Judge Easterbrook writes:

Hav ing exhausted his opportunities within the Fifth Circuit, where the crime and trial occurred, Webster asked for collat eral relief under 28 U.S.C. §2241 in the Southern District of Indiana, where he is confined. * * *

The United States Code is jam-­‐‑packed with imperative language. Rules of law tell litigants, and courts, what must be done. These rules are enforced when their beneficiaries invoke them. If they are also treated as jurisdictional, how ever, then courts must raise the subject on their own, even when litigants choose to waive or forfeit their rights. Declar for judges but also creates a prospect that the time and ener gy invested in a case will prove to be wasted, when an ap pellate court dismisses the suit or directs the litigants to start over. Curtailing the need for judges to resolve issues on their own initiative, and the risk that both private and judicial ef forts will be squandered, are the principal reasons why the Supreme Court has insisted in recent years that very few rules be treated as jurisdictional. See, e.g., Gonzalez, 132 S. Ct. at 647–48.

The text of §2255(e) does not suggest to us that Congress set out to prevent the Attorney General from consenting to collateral review under §2241, if the Executive Branch thinks that necessary to avert an injustice. We conclude, according ly, that §2255(e) does not contract subject-­matter jurisdic tion—which means that its benefits can be waived or forfeit ed. But in this case the Attorney General has invoked his right to say “enough is enough” and to prevent an addition al round of collateral review. The district court had jurisdic tion and entered the proper kind of judgment. AFFIRMED

Posted by Marcia Oddi on August 4, 2014 11:20 AM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions