When Carol Anne Bond’s best friend gave birth to a baby fathered by her, Bond’s, husband, she sought revenge. She applied toxic chemicals to her friend’s mailbox, doorknobs, etc. She was caught on video surveillance and arrested, but the local authorities choose not to press charges. Instead she was charged in federal court under the Chemical Weapons Convention because she put postal workers at risk.
Arguing for Bond, Paul Clement told the justices that prosecutors had overreached; that the treaty should only apply to “warlike” uses of chemicals, and not to attempts to poison a “romantic rival”.
Solicitor General Verrilli had a harder time at the lectern trying to convince the Court to not put limits on the implementation of international treaties.
Among the many hypotheticals posed to the Solicitor General was a statement from Justice Alito that he and his wife had passed out “chemical weapons” to children -i.e., Halloween chocolate. Why, he asked, would that not fall under the Chemical Weapons Convention since the treaty bans any chemical harmful to animals as well as humans, and, he noted, “chocolate is poisonous to dogs”.
The case is Bond v. U.S.
Lyle Denniston covers the argument here.