Legal news from Thursday, April 6, 2006
17:04 EDT

[JURIST] French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin [official profile] said Thursday he was open to all proposals for resolving the month-long standoff with students and labor unions over the law [JURIST document] establishing the First Employment Contract (contrat premiere embauche, CPE) [JURIST news archive], but gave no indication that he [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] US House Judiciary Committee [official website] chairman Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) [official website] accused US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales [official profile] of "stonewalling" his committee on the topic of the NSA warrantless surveillance program [JURIST news archive] during an oversight hearing [meeting materials] Thursday on US Justice Department operations. [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] The State Department announced Thursday afternoon in Washington that the United States will not be seeking membership this year of the new UN Human Rights Council [official website; UN materials; FAQ]. A spokesman said in a press statement ahead of a scheduled daily briefing:There are strong candidates in our [read more]

15:04 EDT

[JURIST] US Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) [official website], Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) [official website] and eleven other senators announced Thursday that party leaders have hammered out a compromise immigration reform bill [PDF summary; press conference transcript] that both sides hope to submit for a floor vote before [read more]

15:04 EDT

[JURIST] European Union [official website] diplomats on Thursday evening are expected to approve a travel ban on 31 high-level Belarus governmental officials, including the president, in reaction to the controversial March 19th presidential election [JURIST report] and the subsequent crackdown on protesters [JURIST report]. Over 600 protesters now face criminal [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] The vice president of Russian oil giant Yukos [corporate website], Vasily Aleksanyan, has been charged by Russian prosecutors with embezzling company funds and laundering money. Aleksanyan, who only took over as Yukos VP on Tuesday, headed up Yukos’ legal department before taking on the task of protecting the company’s [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] Former vice-presidential Chief of Staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [defense profile; JURIST news archive] told the federal grand jury investigating the CIA leak case that President Bush authorized his disclosure of intelligence information on Iraq, according to the government's response [PDF text] to Libby's third motion to compel discovery [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] Former Liberian President Charles Taylor [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] has selected British lawyer Karim Asad Ahmad Khan to serve as his provisional counsel in proceedings at the Special Court for Sierra Leone [official website]. Special Court Principal Defender Vincent Nmehielle [official website] on Wednesday issued a decision [PDF [read more]

12:04 EDT

[JURIST] Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani [official profile] testified at the resumed sentencing trial of Zacarias Moussaoui [JURIST news archive] on Thursday, describing the 9/11 attacks as he experienced them in his official capacity. He recalled being unable to grasp the extent of the calamity until he saw [read more]

12:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US Department of Defense [official website] said Thursday that a review of one of the government's national security databases, the Threat and Local Observation Notice system or TALON program [Wired report], uncovered approximately 260 improper entries into the system. The database serves as a reporting system for possible [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] Police officers in Nepal [JURIST news archive] arrested 300 protestors Thursday who were involved in 16 demonstrations across the capital city calling for a restoration of democracy in the country. Gopendra Pandey, a spokesman for the Nepal Ministry of Home Affairs [official website], said that arrests had been made [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] A British county court has given a UK anti-war activist until May 5 to pay £580 (about $1,017 USD) in back taxes he's withholding to protest the war in Iraq or face seizure of his property. Robin Brookes, a member of the Peace Tax Seven [advocacy website], told the [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Ugandan Supreme Court [official website] has ruled by a vote of 4-3 against a challenge [JURIST report] to the February 23 presidential elections which allowed President Yoweri Museveni [BBC profile] to remain in power. The challenge and request for a re-election [JURIST report] was brought by opposition candidate [read more]

10:04 EDT

[JURIST] Khaled Abu Arafa, the minister of Jerusalem affairs in the new Hamas-led Palestinian government [cabinet listing], was detained Thursday by Israeli police as he attempted to meet his predecessor, Ziad Abu Zayyad, for administrative purposes. Reports indicate Abu Arafa may have been taken into custody for attempting to open [read more]

09:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Darfur Peace and Accountability Act of 2006 [HR 3127 text, PDF; bill summary] received near-unanimous approval [roll call] by the US House of Representatives [official website] Wednesday evening. The bill, if approved by the Senate and signed by the president, would deny entry to the US and freeze [read more]

09:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Saddam Hussein trial [JURIST news archive] continued Thursday in Baghdad with testimony from Awad al-Bandar [Wikipedia profile], the head of the Revolutionary Court who sentenced 148 Shiites to death in 1984 [execution order]. Al-Bandar, one of the seven co-defendants on trial with Hussein at the Iraqi High Criminal [read more]

08:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives [official website] on Wednesday passed the 527 Reform Act of 2006 [HR 513 text, PDF; bill summary], legislation that would require non-profit political groups, called "527s" for the tax code section under which they are organized, to register as political committees and follow campaign [read more]

08:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Environmental Protection Agency [official website] is conducting a criminal investigation into management by British Petroleum [corporate website] of oil pipelines in Alaska, according to a report [registration required] in Thursday's Wall Street Journal. A corroded pipeline owned by the company spilled an estimated 134,000 to 267,000 gallons of [read more]

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