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Litigating Drug Abuse Programs

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In-prison drug abuse programs are something that many people think we need more of.  However, given prisoners' propensity to file lawsuits over every microscopic detail of life within prison, does having a program include not only the cost of the program but also the cost of litigating every prisoner gripe about it?  Maybe not, even in the Ninth Circuit.  Today, that court held in Reeb v. Thomas,

This case requires us to decide whether a district court has subject matter jurisdiction to review the Bureau of Prisons' ("BOP") individualized residential drug abuse program ("RDAP") determinations, a question of first impression in this Circuit....  Because we hold that 18 U.S.C. § 3625 precludes judicial review under the Administrative Procedure Act ("APA") of the BOP's individualized RDAP determinations made pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3621, we vacate and remand to the district court.
Reeb's specific gripe, BTW, was, "After exhibiting disruptive behavior in group counseling sessions on several occasions, Reeb was expelled from RDAP on April 2, 2008."

This is only a panel decision, though, so the en banc Ninth Circuit can still impose a litigation burden on the program.

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