Legal news from Wednesday, February 22, 2006
20:02 EDT

[JURIST] The National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA) [group website] released [news release] a report [text, PDF] on Wednesday that criticizes the new federal bankruptcy law [JURIST report] enacted in October 2005, saying the new law does little to stop abuses of the bankruptcy system and has just placed [read more]

19:02 EDT

[JURIST] A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit [official website] has rejected [opinion text, PDF] a 7-year-old ban in New Jersey on the use of local roads by large rigs travelling interstate because it violates the Commerce Clause [Wikipedia backgrounder] of the US Constitution. [read more]

19:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] heard oral arguments Wednesday in Holmes v. South Carolina [Duke Law case backgrounder; merit briefs], a case in which it will decide whether state courts can preclude defendants from presenting evidence that inculpates others for their crimes in capital trials. [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) [official website] announced Wednesday that one of the five NTP patents that a court found was infringed upon by Research In Motion's (RIM) [corporate wesbsite], manufacturer of the BlackBerry [product website] wireless device, has been found invalid on final review [RIM press [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] New Jersey is launching legal actions in federal and state court to keep a company from the United Arab Emirates [official website] from taking over US port operations in the state, Gov. Jon Corzine [official website; press release] said Tuesday. Corzine said the New Jersey attorney general will file [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] Pennsylvania's Dover Area School District [official website] has agreed to pay $1 million in plaintiff's attorneys' fees after a federal district court found that the school district's inclusion of intelligent design theory in its high school biology curriculum was unconstitutional. In Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District [opinion, PDF; [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] The government of South Korea is seriously considering abandoning capital punishment, according to officials at the country's Justice Ministry [official website] on Wednesday. Earlier this week the ministry ordered a study to determine how abolishing the death penalty - which has not been used since 1997 - would effect [read more]

14:02 EDT

[JURIST] New Haitian president Rene Preval [Wikipedia profile] said Wednesday that ousted president Jean-Bertrand Aristide [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] has a legal right to re-enter the country. In his first news conference since his victory in the February 2 election, President Preval invoked Article 41 of the Haitian Constitution: [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] A Rhode Island jury Wednesday found three former lead paint manufacturers [JURIST report] responsible for creating a public nuisance that had contaminated thousands of homes and continues to poison children. The jury found Sherwin Williams, NL Industries Inc. [corporate websites], and Millennium Holdings all accountable, but cleared a fourth [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] EU justice and interior ministers meeting in Brussels Tuesday approved [European Council proceedings, PDF] a controversial data retention directive [DOC] passed by the European Parliament [JURIST report] in December designed to track down terrorists, paedophiles, and criminal gangs and calling for EU member states to store citizens' phone call [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] Trial was scheduled to begin Wednesday in El Paso, TX for Sgt. Alan J. Driver, a reservist accused of abusing prisoners at Bagram Control Point [Global Security profile; JURIST news archive] in Afghanistan [JURIST news archive]. He is the last soldier in a group [JURIST report] of 11 from [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Bush administration has indicated that journalists can be prosecuted for receiving or publishing classified information under the United States Espionage Act [18 USC 793 text; Wikipedia backgrounder]. US Department of Justice lawyers made the assertion in a January 30 response [PDF] to a motion by lawyers for two [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] US Army Gen. Bantz J. Craddock [official profile], military commander for US Southern Command [official website], which oversees the detention center at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive], has confirmed that military officials have begun employing more aggressive tactics to deter detainees from carrying out long-term hunger strikes [JURIST report] [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] Krishna Sitaula, leader of the opposition Nepali Congress [party website], was arrested at his home on Wednesday, just two days after he was released from prison [Rising Nepal report], along with several other opposition politicians, according to an order [JURIST report] from the Supreme Court of Nepal [official website]. [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] Defense lawyers for I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [defense profile; JURIST news archive], Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, have denied that they are trying to derail the prosecution in the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive] by requesting access to classified government material. Last month, Libby's defense team [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Wednesday handed down decisions in four cases, including Dolan v. U.S. Postal Service [Duke Law backgrounder; JURIST report], where the Court ruled that a Pennsylvania woman could sue the US Postal Service for injuries she sustained after slipping on a pile of [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge in California has issued a preliminary injunction [text, PDF] against search engine company Google [corporate backgrounder], requiring the company to remove images from its image search service [search engine website] that violate the copyrights of adult entertainment media company Perfect 10. The court found that Google [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] The lower house of the Russian parliament, the State Duma [official website], Wednesday gave critical second-reading approval to an expansive anti-terror bill which would grant a broad range of new counter-terrorism powers to law enforcement and the military. The Duma vote on the draft law was 408-1, with five [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge has granted a request by defense attorneys [JURIST report] that sentencing for Ahmed Omar Abu Ali [JURIST news archive], convicted [JURIST report] in November of last year for joining al Qaeda and conspiring to assassinate President Bush, be delayed until March 9 so that prosecutors have [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] A French court has ordered the three acquitted photographers [JURIST report; BBC report] who pursued Princess Diana [official memorial website] and Dodi al Fayed's car the night of their fatal crash in 1997 to pay one euro in damages for invasion of privacy. In a decision made public Wednesday, [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] on Wednesday again asked the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] to answer his request for provisional release [JURIST report] to travel to Russia for medical care. Milosevic suffers from high blood pressure and a [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST Europe] Nearly 100 detainees have died in US custody in Iraq and Afghanistan since August 2002, according to findings of the US rights group Human Rights First [advocacy website] initially reported Tuesday evening on BBC television's Newsnight program [video of broadcast available through 5 PM ET Wednesday]. The program [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] Carla del Ponte [official profile], chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia [official website], said Wednesday that Serbian government officials had told her that war crimes fugitive Ratko Mladic [ICTY case backgrounder; BBC profile] has not been arrested. Serbian media reported Tuesday that the former [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Tuesday's international brief, Israeli attorney Eran Shahar, representing Civil Coalition (CC), a civil rights group, has filed a lawsuit against Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [BBC profile] in the German Constitutional Court on charges of incitement and denying the existence of the World War II Holocaust [BBC backgrounder]. Shahar [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] US Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) [official website], the ranking Democrat on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence [official website], said Tuesday that a top intelligence official had been prepared to brief the committee in December on the Bush administration's domestic surveillance program [JURIST news archive], but had been stopped [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] Chilean judge Orlando Alvarez on Tuesday refused to release former Peruvian president Alberto Fujimori [personal website; JURIST news archive] from custody while the judge considers an extradition request for Fujimori [JURIST report]. The decision means Fujimori, who is being held at an school for corrections officers, will remain in [read more]

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