U.S. claims jurisdictions abroad
Year Published: 1990
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX3904
The United States Supreme Court ruled on March 1 that U.S. agents have the right to break into, search, and seize evidence from buildings on foreign soil without obtaining a search warrant or other authorization from the country concerned. The court was ruling on a case in which U.S. 'law enforcement' officers searched the home of a Mexican citizen, in Mexico. The court upheld their actions, and went on to say that "other foreign policy operations which might result in searches or seizures" were also permitted. The ruling comes in the wake of a U.S. Justice Department directive in October 1989 -- shortly before the U.S. invasion of Panama -- which states that F.B.I. agents are empowered to arrest and seize suspects anywhere in the world without asking other countries for permission first.