Notes on 28 U.S.C. § 1350 : US Code - Notes

    (June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 934.)



                       HISTORICAL AND REVISION NOTES                   
      Based on title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed., Sec. 41(17) (Mar. 3, 1911,
    ch. 231, Sec. 24, par. 17, 36 Stat. 1093).
      Words "civil action" were substituted for "suits," in view of
    Rule 2 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
      Changes in phraseology were made.

                         TORTURE VICTIM PROTECTION                     
      Pub. L. 102-256, Mar. 12, 1992, 106 Stat. 73, provided that:

      "SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
      "This Act may be cited as the 'Torture Victim Protection Act of
    1991'.

      "SEC. 2. ESTABLISHMENT OF CIVIL ACTION.
      "(a) Liability. - An individual who, under actual or apparent
    authority, or color of law, of any foreign nation - 
        "(1) subjects an individual to torture shall, in a civil
      action, be liable for damages to that individual; or
        "(2) subjects an individual to extrajudicial killing shall, in
      a civil action, be liable for damages to the individual's legal
      representative, or to any person who may be a claimant in an
      action for wrongful death.
      "(b) Exhaustion of Remedies. - A court shall decline to hear a
    claim under this section if the claimant has not exhausted adequate
    and available remedies in the place in which the conduct giving
    rise to the claim occurred.
      "(c) Statute of Limitations. - No action shall be maintained
    under this section unless it is commenced within 10 years after the
    cause of action arose.

      "SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.
      "(a) Extrajudicial Killing. - For the purposes of this Act, the
    term 'extrajudicial killing' means a deliberated killing not
    authorized by a previous judgment pronounced by a regularly
    constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are
    recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples. Such term,
    however, does not include any such killing that, under
    international law, is lawfully carried out under the authority of a
    foreign nation.
      "(b) Torture. - For the purposes of this Act - 
        "(1) the term 'torture' means any act, directed against an
      individual in the offender's custody or physical control, by
      which severe pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering
      arising only from or inherent in, or incidental to, lawful
      sanctions), whether physical or mental, is intentionally
      inflicted on that individual for such purposes as obtaining from
      that individual or a third person information or a confession,
      punishing that individual for an act that individual or a third
      person has committed or is suspected of having committed,
      intimidating or coercing that individual or a third person, or
      for any reason based on discrimination of any kind; and
        "(2) mental pain or suffering refers to prolonged mental harm
      caused by or resulting from - 
          "(A) the intentional infliction or threatened infliction of
        severe physical pain or suffering;
          "(B) 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;
          "(C) the threat of imminent death; or
          "(D) the threat that another individual 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."