Legal news from Thursday, October 13, 2005
20:10 EDT

[JURIST] Following a proposal [JURIST report] Monday by UK Home Secretary Charles Clarke [official profile], Britain's Parliament [official website] on Thursday added 15 terror organizations with suspected links to al Qaeda to a list of 25 organizations already banned under the Terrorism Act 2000 [text]. Prominent newly-banned groups include Ansar [read more]

19:10 EDT

[JURIST] Texas prosecutor Ronnie Earle [website] on Thursday subpoenaed telephone records from the home and political campaign office of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) [official website; JURIST news archive] Earle also subpoenaed the telephone records of DeLay’s daughter, Dani DeLay Ferro, in his effort to uncover information on [read more]

19:10 EDT

[JURIST] South Africa on Thursday repealed the oppressive Black Administration Act [PDF text], ending the last vestige of apartheid. The 1927 Act had provided a uniform system of administration and regulation for black people by empowering tribal chiefs and regulating the succession of estates. Its enforcement also thwarted attempts by [read more]

17:10 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Thursday's states brief, a New York appeals court [official website] ruled today that a member of a Vermont civil union has no standing to sue a Manhattan hospital for malpractice in the death of his partner. In finding that the partner had no standing, the court stated, "any [read more]

16:10 EDT

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch said Thursday that hundreds of individuals accused of minor crimes in New Orleans before Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] struck are still detained in temporary local correctional facilities, awaiting a hearing before a judge. The chaos in the days after the hurricane forced parish prisons to [read more]

16:10 EDT

[JURIST] Uzbek police have arrested activist Mukhtabar Tojibaeva [HRW press release], hours before she was expected to attend a human rights conference. Tojibaeva, who heads up the human rights organization Fiery Hearts, has been a vocal critic of the Uzbek government's alleged massacre [JURIST report] of 200 Uzbek citizens during [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] The US Department of Justice [official website] on Thursday announced [press release] that Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. [corporate website] will plead guilty to charges that it conspired with other technology companies to fix prices on some of its dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips. Under the plea deal, Samsung [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] Harriet Miers will not withdraw her nomination to the US Supreme Court, White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters [press briefing transcript] Thursday. McClellan, when asked if Miers might withdraw her name, insisted that, "no one that knows her would make such a suggestion." The Miers nomination [JURIST news [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Association of Muslim Scholars [Global Security backgrounder] on Thursday urged Iraqis to reject the draft Iraqi constitution [JURIST news archive; JURIST document] when it comes up for referendum on October 15 [IECI fact sheet, PDF]. A spokesman for the influential Sunni group asserted that even with the Iraqi [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Faced with a growing problem of overcrowded jails, British officials are considering fitting some prisoners with electronic tags and releasing them, a government minister said Thursday. According to a report [text] in the Times, the plan calls for criminals sentenced to four years in prison to be freed after [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Mexican government [official website] is concerned that Texas Gov. Rick Perry's "Operation Linebacker," a pledge of $9.7 million to beef up security along the US-Mexico border, will lead to human rights violations. In a statement released late Wednesday, Mexican officials said that their government remains committed to combating [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] Following up on a report in JURIST's Paper Chase earlier today, Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] will likely face charges of premeditated murder, torture and forced expulsion and disappearances for his alleged role in a 1982 massacre of Shiites [NPR audio report] when his trial begins next week, a [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] Chaplains in the US Air Force [official website] will no longer subscribe to a code of ethics that endorses the evangelizing of service members not affiliated with any religion, Air Force officials have announced. The move comes in the wake of a lawsuit filed [JURIST report] by a Jewish [read more]

12:10 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge has ruled that State Street Bank and Trust Company [bank website] will not be held responsible for major losses in a United Airlines (UAL) [corporate website] employee stock-ownership plan. Over 70,000 United employees and retirees filed a class action lawsuit [JURIST report] in 2003 alleging that [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers for Platon Lebedev, business partner of jailed Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky [JURIST news archive], said Thursday that they have asked the Russian General Prosecutor's Office for information on the whereabouts of their client and have also requested to see him. A spokesman for the prosecutor's office previously [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] Serbian authorities issued a new arrest warrant [JURIST report] for the wife of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic [JURIST news archive] Thursday. Mirjana Markovic [Wikipedia profile], who fled Russia in 2003 in the face of an international warrant, failed to appear before a Belgrade court for alleged corruption charges. [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Ohio Supreme Court [official website] has ruled that it is unconstitutional for judges to require cash-only bonds pending trial. In a 4-3 ruling [PDF opinion] Wednesday, the court said that a 1993 decision that said that Ohio defendants can meet bond requirements by cash deposit, pledges of property [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] The UN-backed International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] has said that it will allow former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj [BBC profile] to participate in politics during his provisional release pending his war crimes trial. The tribunal eased the conditions of Haradinaj's release [ICTY decision], [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] A spokesman for the Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST) [official website] said Thursday that the trial of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] is still set to begin on October 19, despite concerns that the trial may be postponed. Investigatory judge and IST spokesman Raad Jouhi also said Thursday that Hussein [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] condemned [HRW press release] Australia's proposed anti-terror legislation [government backgrounder] Thursday as a violation of international law and called the proposal "a shocking departure from Australia's proud tradition of protecting individuals from an overly powerful state". Last month, Australian Prime Minister [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Swedish government plans to introduce a new law that would require anyone held on reasonable suspicion of a crime to provide a DNA sample to be kept in a national registry. Swedish Justice Minister Thomas Bodstrom [official profile] presented the proposal to the Social Democrats parliamentary group earlier [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The government of The Netherlands is considering a ban on the burka [Wikipedia backgrounder], the Muslim article of clothing for women that leaves only the eyes visible. Dutch Integration Minister Rita Verdonk [official profile in Dutch], known domestically as the "Iron Lady" for her tough anti-immigration initiatives, says she [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] British authorities in Iraq have said that the UK will pay compensation for damages and injuries caused when British troops stormed a Basra jail to free two detained British soldiers [JURIST report] last month. The soldiers, apparently undercover members of the SAS, had been accused of killing an Iraqi [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] Turkish prosecutors have rejected a demand by Ankara's deputy governor to shut down a new homosexual association. The governor's office urged that the title and purpose of the Kaos Gay and Lesbian Cultural Research and Solidarity Association [official website, English version] violated the Turkish Civil Code, which prohibits associations [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Uzbekistan interior ministry on Thursday denied allegations that they used illegal torture methods to extract confessions from the 15 men on trial for the political uprising in Andijan [HRW backgrounder], which led to government troops killing 500 [JURIST report]. The 15 men currently on trial [JURIST report] for [read more]

09:10 EDT

[JURIST] Iran's judiciary has finalized a list of charges against ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive], which include charges of genocide, crimes against humanity, violations of international law, and using prohibited chemical weapons. These charges stem from the 1980-1988 war fought between Iraq and Iran, during which Iraq [read more]

09:10 EDT

[JURIST] Britain's House of Lords on Thursday upheld [judgment] legislation which makes hunting wild mammals with dogs throughout England and Wales a criminal offense. The 1949 Parliament Act [BBC backgrounder] was used late last year to push the Hunting Act 2004 [text] through a recalcitrant House of Lords and the [read more]

09:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Philippine government [official website] has agreed "in principle" to give southern Muslims the authority to develop their own tax system, build their own institutions, and write their own charter, according to a report [text] in Thursday's Philippine Daily Inquirer confirmed by an anonymous government official. The official said [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] The US Securities and Exchange Commission [official website] has subpoenaed personal records of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist [official website] in its investigation into possible insider trading by Frist, the Washington Post reported Thursday [WP report, registration required]. The subpoena was reportedly issued at some time in the past [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] China has expressed "resolute opposition" to a US report critical of the country for its handling of human and religious rights, with a spokesman from the Foreign Ministry of China [official website, English version] arguing that the US was meddling in China's internal affairs. The report [full text] was [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] US District Judge Thomas F. Hogan [official profile] has lifted a contempt order against New York Times reporter Judith Miller [JURIST news archive] following her testimony Wednesday before a federal grand jury investigating the 2003 leak of the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame [JURIST news archive]. Judge Hogan [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] A US district judge has awarded $91 million for emotional distress to the family of Joseph Cicippio, who was held hostage in Lebanon by the paramilitary group Hezbollah [BBC News backgrounder] from 1986 to 1991. US District Judge Henry H. Kennedy Jr. [official profile] issued a default judgment under [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] Detainees at prisons across Iraq who have not yet been tried cast their votes in the country's constitutional referendum [JURIST news archive] Thursday as authorities stepped up security [AP report] in preparation for the full referendum on Saturday. Those casting votes included detainees at Abu Ghraib [JURIST news archive] [read more]

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