Due Process; Right to Confrontation

US Const. Amend. 5, provides that no person should be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.  However, in investigations conducted by administrative agencies, due process rights are not considered[i].  Due process rights are not considered in investigations conducted by administrative agencies even if it is a criminal prosecution[ii].  In Romero-Barcelo v. Acevedo-Vila, 275 F. Supp. 2d 177 (D.P.R. 2003), the court held that full due process rights are not considered in investigations conducted by administrative agencies.  However, if the investigations directly affect or adjudicate rights of an individual, then due process rights should be considered.  The Due Process right may not be considered when administrative agency, without notifying a person under investigation, uses its subpoena power to gather evidence adverse to him[iii].  The due process clause is not implicated under such circumstances because investigations conducted by administrative agencies adjudicate no legal rights.

The procedural protections required by due process may be determined with reference to the rights and interests at issue in a particular case[iv].  If no legal rights are adversely determined during the investigation, the demands of due process are satisfied by granting procedural rights in the subsequent proceedings.  Similarly, the right to present evidence is essential to the fair hearing required by the due process clause.  This right becomes particularly fundamental when the proceeding allegedly results in a finding that a particular individual was guilty of a crime[v].

[i] Aponte v. Calderon, 284 F.3d 184 (1st Cir. P.R. 2002)

[ii] id

[iii] id

[iv] Beverly Enters. v. Herman, 130 F. Supp. 2d 1 (D.D.C. 2000)

[v] Lyons v. Conway, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74742 (N.D.N.Y Sept. 30, 2006)


Inside Due Process; Right to Confrontation