In international practice, consuls aid their nationals detained on criminal charges in a variety of ways. They may recommend appropriate defense attorneys, explain detaining states' criminal justice systems to detainees, and facilitate the location of documentary evidence or witnesses from the home state. More generally, they ensure, by their very presence, that police and other authorities treat their nationals fairly. Like their colleagues from other states, U.S. consuls perform such functions for detained U.S. nationals. Furthermore, the United States has more consuls than any other state, hence more to gain from the strict observance of the right of consular access.
LaGrand: A Challenge to the U.S. Judiciary,
Yale J. Int'l L.
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