Guardsman seeks Supreme Court injunction

An Oregon National Guardsman asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday to halt his deployment to Afghanistan.

Emiliano Santiago, 27, an electronics technician and a helicopter refueler now living in Pasco, Wash., is fighting plans to ship him out because his eight-year service agreement expired last year. His lawyers told the court Santiago is the victim of a "backdoor draft."

Santiago on Friday was sent to Fort Sill, in Lawton, Okla., in preparation for deployment to Afghanistan, said Collette Belusko, a receptionist for Santiago's attorney, Steven Goldberg in Portland, Ore.

Goldberg on Friday did not immediately respond to a request for additional information.

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, sitting in Seattle, declined to halt his impending departure. On Thursday, the court declined to rehear the case with 11 judges.

Santiago "honorably performed his end of the bargain, completing his commitment to serve eight years in the nation's armed forces," his lawyers wrote in a filing with the Supreme Court.

Rather than rewarding Santiago for his service "the government now demands additional involuntary service abroad," the lawyers added in seeking an injunction in order to prevent Santiago's deployment.

No U.S. federal appeals court has sided with similarly situated military personnel fighting their deployments.

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