Legal news from Monday, May 9, 2005
15:05 EDT

[JURIST] Former Walt Disney Company directors Roy Disney and Stanley Gold filed suit against current Disney directors [press release; SaveDisney.com advocacy website] including former Disney CEO Michael Eisner Monday for fraud and breach of duty in connection with the public disclosure of information concerning the election of a new CEO [read more]

15:05 EDT

[JURIST] Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue [official website] signed a bill Monday which effectively bans smoking in almost all public places in the tobacco-growing state. The Georgia Smokefree Air Act of 2005 [PDF text] would still allow smoking in bars that exclude children under 18, certain workspace areas with independent air [read more]

13:05 EDT

[JURIST] In a statement issued Monday while visiting Europe for World War II commemorations, President Bush once again urged the Senate to put his judicial nominees to an up-or-down vote [White House press release]. Two of the nominees highlighted in the Monday statement, Texas Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Owen [US [read more]

13:05 EDT

[JURIST] Mississippi state Attorney General Jim Hood [official website] announced Monday that under the terms of a settlement agreement with the state telecommunications giant MCI [corporate website] will hand over $100M cash to cover back taxes owed by its predecessor, WorldCom, as well as turn over WorldCom's former headquarters in [read more]

12:05 EDT

[JURIST] William Higgins, holder of a seat on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) [corporate website], filed suit in New York state court Monday in a bid to block the NYSE merging with electronic stock market Archipelago Holdings. The merger announced last month would transform the NYSE into a public, [read more]

12:05 EDT

[JURIST] Iran's Guardian Council [BBC backgrounder], the legislative watchdog panel composed of six lawyers and six Islamic clerics, Monday rejected a bill that would have allowed abortion during the first four months of pregnancy when the mother's life was endangered or a child would be born with a severe handicap [read more]

11:05 EDT

[JURIST] The Spanish government has announced that it is granting some 700,000 work permits to previously-illegal immigrants who could prove that they had lived and worked in Spain for at least six months. As of Saturday, the final day immigrants could apply for amnesty in the latest drive launched in [read more]

10:05 EDT

[JURIST] An Israeli newspaper reported Monday that senior officers in the Israel Defense Forces [official website] want to pre-emptively detain a number of Israeli extremists before the planned Gaza Strip pullout [JURIST report] and evacuation of settlements this summer. On Sunday, authorities acting on orders of the Israeli Defense Minister [read more]

10:05 EDT

[JURIST] Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon [official profile] announced Sunday that he will postpone the release of 400 Palestinian prisoners, alleging that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is not upholding his promise to pressure Palestinian militants into a ceasefire. Abbas responded that Sharon was acting in bad faith and was [read more]

09:05 EDT

[JURIST] New legal documents filed by convicted spy Jonathan Pollard [defense website] include allegations that Pollard has been tortured during his US imprisonment. Pollard was arrested in 1985 and was convicted of spying for Israel while he was a civilian intelligence analyst for the Navy. In a petition [Hebrew text; [read more]

09:05 EDT

[JURIST] The trial of two Rwandan men accused of war crimes during the 1994 Rwandan genocide [BBC backgrounder] begins Monday in Brussels. Half-brothers Etienne Nzabonimana and Samuel Ndashyikirwa are accused of helping the Hutu militia and are charged under Belgium's universal jurisdiction law, which allows the prosecution of war crimes [read more]

08:05 EDT

[JURIST] A week after Nepal's King Gyanendra [official website; BBC profile] lifted a state of emergency [JURIST report], the country's seven political parties have joined together to present a common agenda that demands a return to democracy and constitutional reforms to limit the monarchy's power. Speaking on behalf of all [read more]

08:05 EDT

[JURIST] Egypt's upper house of parliament Sunday approved an amendment to the Egyptian Constitution [text] setting regulations for Egypt's first multi-candidate presidential election despite fear in some quarters that the guidelines would exclude serious contenders from running. Egyptians have typically cast a confidence vote to approve a presidential candidate selected [read more]

08:05 EDT

[JURIST] The families of ten British soldiers killed in Iraq announced Sunday that they are filing suit against Prime Minister Tony Blair's government in the International Criminal Court [official website] for war crimes. Their group, Military Families Against the War, had previously demanded a full public inquiry into the soldiers' [read more]

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