Legal news from Monday, June 13, 2005
20:06 EDT

[JURIST] The indictment filed against former Defense Department employee Lawrence Franklin for passing classified government information was unsealed Monday. The specific charges allege Franklin conspired to share national defense and other material with unauthorized persons, including two unnamed American Israel Public Affairs Committee [official website] employees. Franklin was arrested in [read more]

19:06 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Monday's corporations and securities law news, embattled Morgan Stanley [corporate website] CEO Philip Purcell [Wikipedia profile], has announced his retirement. Purcell has recently faced criticism from shareholders and former company executives for Morgan Stanley’s financial and legal troubles. His retirement follows a string of high-profile departures from the [read more]

19:06 EDT

[JURIST] According to a list obtained by the Associated Press and reported Monday, the Iraqi Special Tribunal will try former dictator Saddam Hussein on 14 charges. The list includes the seven preliminary charges [BBC backgrounder] outlined in his 2004 arraignment, and additional charges including the mortar bombardment of Kirkuk, the [read more]

18:06 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Monday's states brief, the United States Supreme Court today ordered a federal appeals court to reconsider whether the state of Missouri can charge the disabled $2 for portable disabled parking placards. The placards allow disabled persons to park in reserved spaces. A class action lawsuit alleged that the [read more]

17:06 EDT

[JURIST] Pop star Michael Jackson has been acquitted of all charges against him. He had been charged with 10 counts in connection with events that allegedly took place with a 13-year-old boy two years ago. He was acquitted of four counts of lewd conduct with a child younger than 14; [read more]

15:06 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Monday's international brief, Sudan's domestic war crimes tribunal is scheduled to hold its first hearings Tuesday in the capital city of Khartoum, according to Sudanese Justice Minister Ali Mohammed Yassin. Yassin said that over 160 individuals indicted on various war crimes and crimes against humanity that allegedly occurred [read more]

15:06 EDT

[JURIST] The trial of reputed Ku Klux Klan member Edgar Ray Killen [JURIST report] began on Monday with jury selection in Philadelphia, Mississippi. Killen is charged in connection with the 1964 murder [UMKC backgrounder] of three civil rights workers. About 400 people received summonses for the jury pool; several dozen [read more]

15:06 EDT

[JURIST] Outspoken Serbian human rights activist Natasa Kandic [Time profile] of Belgrade's the Humanitarian Law Center [advocacy website] said Monday that war crimes suspect Gen. Ratko Mladic [BBC profile] is preparing his surrender to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website]. Though the Serbian government denies [read more]

14:06 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers for detainees being held at Guantanamo [JURIST news archives] say as many as six of those being held were captured before they turned 18 [NYT report]. One lawyer says his client was not even 15 when captured, and was physically abused. According to the military, only three juveniles [read more]

14:06 EDT

[JURIST] The National People's Assembly [official website] in Algeria on Monday began debating the country's first draft law to try and combat widespread corruption that has thus far hindered foreign investment in the oil-rich nation. According to a 2003 report [PDF text] from Transparency International [advocacy website], Algeria ranked 88 [read more]

13:06 EDT

[JURIST] Despite reforms giving women the right to vote, drive, and run for many government offices, hundreds of Iranian women staged a protest on Sunday [AKI report] demanding a right still denied them - the right to run for president [JURIST report]. Activists are campaigning for a constitutional amendment which [read more]

12:06 EDT

[JURIST] A man identified from a graphic video [JURIST Monitor file] shot during the Srebrenica [BBC timeline] massacre of Bosnian Muslims in 1995 was arrested on Monday in Croatia. Slobodan Davidovic had recently admitted to the New York Times [New York Times report] that he was part of a paramilitary [read more]

12:06 EDT

[JURIST] The Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST) [official website] said Monday that an Iraqi investigatory judge has questioned former dictator Saddam Hussein regarding the killing of nearly 160 men in the predominantly-Shiite village of Dujail, a case identified last week [JURIST report] as the first on which Hussein might be tried. [read more]

11:06 EDT

[JURIST] In a significant denial of certiorari Monday, the US Supreme Court refused to hear a challenge [PDF cert petition] by accused "dirty bomber" Jose Padilla [BBC profile] to his status as an enemy combatant [JURIST report] after Padilla asked the justices to bypass the federal appeals court level in [read more]

11:06 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court on Monday let stand without comment a lower court ruling that overturned new FCC regulations that would have allowed greater media consolidation. Several major media conglomerates, including News Corp. [corporate website], Clear Channel [corporate website], and Viacom [corporate website], originally sought the rules in order [read more]

11:06 EDT

[JURIST] In a unanimous decision Monday, the US Supreme Court [official website] declined to impose [JURIST report] stricter procedural limits on decisions by state officials to place certain inmates in "super-maximum security" prisons. Read the Court's opinion [PDF text] in Wilkinson v. Austin [Duke Law backgrounder].Also Monday, the Supreme Court [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] A referendum [JURIST report] to liberalize Italy's assisted-fertility laws has failed due to low voter turnout. The two-day referendum [official site, in Italian] needed over 50 percent turnout for its results to count, but only 18.7 percent voted Sunday and early figures reported by the Italian Interior Ministry after [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] In a 6-3 decision Monday the US Supreme Court overturned the conviction of a black inmate on death row who claimed that Texas prosecutors purposely eliminated black jurors to fill the jury with whites. Justice Souter, writing for the majority, rejected the state's claim that the strikes were not [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court in a unanimous decision has ruled that drug companies can do "pre-clinical studies" under FDA rules on an existing patented drug in the process of developing a generic alternative to market in the future. Read a summary of Merck KGaA v. Integra Lifesciences [Duke Law [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] Some 8,000 refugees from Rwanda face deportation Tuesday after neighboring Burundi declared them illegal immigrants over the weekend. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees [official site] has urged Burundi to reconsider and warned it might be violating international law if the refugees are involuntarily returned [Reuters report]. Burundi [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] EU lawmakers now appear set to extend the ratification period for the European Constitution [JURIST news archive] after rejection of the charter by voters in France [JURIST report] and the Netherlands [JURIST report] threw its status into doubt. On Sunday Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, whose country [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] Citing ongoing disagreements over process, the head of the International Crisis Group [advocacy site] conflict-monitoring organization called the initial August 15 deadline for the drafting of the permanent Iraqi constitution "unrealistic" in a Monday editorial in the Financial Times and suggested that the deadline be put off for the [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] Microsoft [corporate website] has agreed to block Chinese users of its new MSN Spaces [corporate website] blogging portal from using certain words and phrases including "democracy", "freedom", "human rights", and "Taiwan independence". A blogger entering those terms gets a message along the lines of "This item should not contain [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] A member of Saddam Hussein's defense team said Sunday that any trial of the former Iraqi dictator should take place not in Iraq, but in Europe. Giovanni di Stefano [profile] told a Swedish television interviewer that he would prefer to see Saddam tried in Sweden, Austria, Switzerland, or the [read more]

08:06 EDT

[JURIST] US senators Chuck Hagel [official website] and Dianne Feinstein [official website] have responded to a newly released log of a Guantanamo interrogation [excepts] with anger and bewilderment. Hagel, a Vietnam Veteran, said the practices reflected in the record telling of prisoner Mohammed al-Khatani being stripped naked and forced to [read more]

08:06 EDT

[JURIST] Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez [BBC profile] said Sunday that he will sue the US in an international court if the US does not comply with a request to extradite Cuban exile and naturalized Venezuelan Luis Posada Carriles [BBC profile]. Posada, accused of blowing up a Cuban airliner in 1976, [read more]

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