Supreme Court session begins without ill Clarence Thomas

Supreme Court Justice Clarence ThomasClarence ThomasSupreme Court returning to courtroom for arguments The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by AT&T - Supreme Court lets Texas abortion law stand Supreme Court could undermine freedom of the press MORE was reportedly absent from the bench Monday as the court reconvened for its new term. 

Chief Justice John Roberts said in his opening remarks that Thomas was "indisposed" due to an illness but said the conservative judge would still be participating in deciding the three cases the court is hearing arguments about, according to Reuters


Details of Thomas's illness were not immediately disclosed.

A spokesperson for the Supreme Court was not immediately available for comment when contacted by The Hill. 

The term began Monday with the court hearing its first arguments in a case focusing on whether states can discard the insanity defense in criminal prosecutions, according to Reuters. 

Thomas, 71, was appointed to the court in 1991 by former President George H.W. Bush. He is the longest-serving justice on the court and one of its most conservative justices.