Legal news from Friday, October 28, 2005
15:10 EDT

[JURIST] In a brief statement Friday afternoon outside the White House, President Bush called Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald's "legal proceedings" against resigned Cheney chief of staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [official profile] "serious", but stressed that Libby is presumed innocent and entitled to due process and a fair trial. He [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] A New York appellate court has upheld a lower court ruling [JURIST report] banning New Paltz [official website; JURIST news archive] Mayor Jason West from performing same-sex marriages. The unanimous five-judge panel said West "acted beyond his authority" when he presided over 24 gay marriages last year. West was [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [official profile], who served as chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney before resigning Friday following his indictment [PDF text; JURIST report] on obstruction of justice and perjury charges in the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive], was the first administration official known to [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Spain's National Court Friday upheld arrest warrants for three US soldiers charged with the 2003 killing of Spanish journalist Jose Couso [advocacy website] in Iraq. Couso was killed while filming for Spain's Telecinco [media website in Spanish] network from a balcony in Baghdad's Palestine Hotel. Prosecutors for the National [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Australian terror suspect David Hicks [BBC profile; advocacy website] has confirmed his plans to sue the United Kingdom government [JURIST report] over its disinclination to grant him British citizenship. Hicks was captured in Afghanistan four years ago and is accused of fighting with the Taliban against US or coalition [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Friday's environmental law news, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) [official website] has released an analysis [EPA press release] comparing a number of different proposed legislative and regulatory initiatives aimed at reducing air pollution from coal fired power plants. The analysis [text], presented by EPA administrator Steve Johnson [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] George Galloway, a member of the British Parliament, allegedly received an allocation for 18 million barrels of oil from Saddam Hussein through the UN oil-for-food program [official website; JURIST news archive] in exchange for assistance in getting UN sanctions lifted against the former regime, according to the last report [read more]

12:10 EDT

[JURIST] KGW.com is reporting that the federal grand jury empaneled in the CIA leak probe [JURIST news archive] has handed up an indictment for I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [official profile], Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, on charges of obstruction of justice, making a false statement and perjury. The [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] An Italian court began hearings on Friday to decide if Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi [BBC News profile, JURIST news archive] will stand trial for fraud in connection with his business holdings [JURIST report]. Berlusconi has previously been cleared of charges of false accounting [JURIST report] and bribery [JURIST report] [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] The defense team for Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] renewed its call for a change of venue [JURIST report] for his trial on Friday, this time asking UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan [official profile] to put pressure on the US and Iraqi government to move the trial to The Hague. [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] Dr. Rafil Dhafir, an oncologist in the Syracuse, New York area, was sentenced to 22 years in prison on Thursday after being convicted of 59 charges in February, including mail and wire fraud, conspiracy, tax evasion and money laundering. Dhafir was indicted in 2003 [JURIST report] for funneling donations [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman [official profile] pleaded not guilty on Thursday afternoon to charges related to what prosecutors are calling a "widespread racketeering conspiracy" [JURIST report]. Former Chief of Staff Paul Hamrick and former state Transportation Director Mack Roberts also pleaded not guilty on Thursday. Richard Scrushy [defense [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] Jailed Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky [MosNews profile; JURIST news archive] issued a statement [full text] on his defense website Thursday criticizing the Russian government and vowing to keep his case in the news: [The Kremlin is] hoping that Khodorkovsky will soon be forgotten. They are trying to convince [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party [official website, English version], led by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, on Friday proposed changes to the pacifist language of the country's constitution, originally written by US occupation forces in 1947. Article 9 of Japan's constitution [text] requires Japan to renounce the right to wage [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle [official website] has subpoenaed all 2002 e-mail correspondence to and from the three indicted associates of Rep. Tom DeLay [official website; JURIST news archive], though the request was not made of DeLay. John Colyandro, Jim Ellis and Warren RoBold were indicted [JURIST report] [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] UN officials have announced that Mexico will become the 100th nation to ratify the Rome Statute [PDF text], the 1998 treaty creating the International Criminal Court [official website], when Mexican officials deposit their ratification documents Friday. The court was established to try individuals for serious international crimes, including genocide, [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] White House advisor Karl Rove [official profile] has been told that he will not be indicted Friday by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald [official website] in the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive], according to reports from ABC News and Sky News. Fitzgerald is expected to announce indictments [JURIST report] [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] French President Jacques Chirac has called for an international tribunal to try Syrian and Lebanese suspects in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri [JURIST news archive]. The UN International Independent Investigation Commission (UNIIIC) submitted its interim report [text; JURIST report] to the UN Security Council last [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan [official profile] on Thursday endorsed [press release] a Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation [PDF text] and an accompanying Code of Conduct in efforts to begin establishing new standards for international election monitoring. The new standards stress that human rights and democracy cannot be [read more]

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