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e-CFR data is current as of January 19, 2021

Title 22Chapter ISubchapter J → Part 95

Title 22: Foreign Relations


§95.1   Definitions.
§95.2   Application.
§95.3   Procedures.
§95.4   Review and construction.

Authority: 18 U.S.C. 3181 et seq.; Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

Source: 64 FR 9437, Feb. 26, 1999, unless otherwise noted.

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§95.1   Definitions.

(a) Convention means the United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Forms of Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, done at New York on December 10, 1984, entered into force for the United States on November 10, 1994. Definitions provided below in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section reflect the language of the Convention and understandings set forth in the United States instrument of ratification to the Convention.

(b) Torture means:

(1) Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.

(2) In order to constitute torture, an act must be specifically intended to inflict severe physical or mental pain or suffering and that mental pain or suffering refers to prolonged mental harm caused by or resulting from:

(i) The intentional infliction or threatened infliction of severe physical pain or suffering;

(ii) The administration or application, or threatened administration or application, of mind altering substances or other procedures calculated to disrupt profoundly the senses or the personality;

(iii) The threat of imminent death; or

(iv) The threat that another person will imminently be subjected to death, severe physical pain or suffering, or the administration or application of mind altering substances or other procedures calculated to disrupt profoundly the senses or personality.

(3) Noncompliance with applicable legal procedural standards does not per se constitute torture.

(4) This definition of torture applies only to acts directed against persons in the offender's custody or physical control.

(5) The term “acquiescence” as used in this definition requires that the public official, prior to the activity constituting torture, have awareness of such activity and thereafter breach his or her legal responsibility to intervene to prevent such activity.

(6) The term “lawful sanctions” as used in this definition includes judicially imposed sanctions and other enforcement actions authorized by law, provided that such sanctions or actions were not adopted in order to defeat the object and purpose of the Convention to prohibit torture.

(7) Torture is an extreme form of cruel and inhuman treatment and does not include lesser forms of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

(c) Where there are substantial grounds for believing that [a fugitive] would be in danger of being subjected to torture means if it is more likely than not that the fugitive would be tortured.

(d) Secretary means Secretary of State and includes, for purposes of this rule, the Deputy Secretary of State, by delegation.

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§95.2   Application.

(a) Article 3 of the Convention imposes on the parties certain obligations with respect to extradition. That Article provides as follows:

(1) No State party shall expel, return (“refouler”) or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture.

(2) For the purpose of determining whether there are such grounds, the competent authorities shall take into account all relevant considerations including, where applicable, the existence in the State concerned of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights.

(b) Pursuant to sections 3184 and 3186 of Title 18 of the United States Criminal Code, the Secretary is the U.S. official responsible for determining whether to surrender a fugitive to a foreign country by means of extradition. In order to implement the obligation assumed by the United States pursuant to Article 3 of the Convention, the Department considers the question of whether a person facing extradition from the U.S. “is more likely than not” to be tortured in the State requesting extradition when appropriate in making this determination.

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§95.3   Procedures.

(a) Decisions on extradition are presented to the Secretary only after a fugitive has been found extraditable by a United States judicial officer. In each case where allegations relating to torture are made or the issue is otherwise brought to the Department's attention, appropriate policy and legal offices review and analyze information relevant to the case in preparing a recommendation to the Secretary as to whether or not to sign the surrender warrant.

(b) Based on the resulting analysis of relevant information, the Secretary may decide to surrender the fugitive to the requesting State, to deny surrender of the fugitive, or to surrender the fugitive subject to conditions.

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§95.4   Review and construction.

Decisions of the Secretary concerning surrender of fugitives for extradition are matters of executive discretion not subject to judicial review. Furthermore, pursuant to section 2242(d) of the Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, P.L. 105-277, notwithstanding any other provision of law, no court shall have jurisdiction to review these regulations, and nothing in section 2242 shall be construed as providing any court jurisdiction to consider or review claims raised under the Convention or section 2242, or any other determination made with respect to the application of the policy set forth in section 2242(a), except as part of the review of a final order of removal pursuant to section 242 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1252), which is not applicable to extradition proceedings.

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