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Legal news from Tuesday, September 26, 2006
by Katerina Ossenova

Former Enron Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow was sentenced to six years in prison Tuesday after US District Court Judge Kenneth Hoyt reduced the 10 year prison term he accepted as part of his plea agreement based on Fastow's cooperation in the prosecution of former Enron CEOs …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Former WorldCom [MCI/WorldCom website] CEO Bernard Ebbers began his 25-year prison sentence Tuesday in the Oakdale Correctional Complex federal prison in Louisiana. In July a federal appeals court affirmed his securities fraud conviction and rejected contentions that a 25-year sentence for the 65-year old Canadian-born ex-executive who started …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Two leaders of Colombia's notorious Cali Cartel drug ring pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to charges of drug trafficking and money laundering. Gilberto and Miguel Rodriguez Orejuela were extradited to the US from Colombia in 2004 and 2005 respectively as two of the 300 drug traffickers extradited to the …

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by Brett Murphy

The head of an EU panel on Monday criticized a White House program that keeps track of international financial transactions, telling the New York Times that it may have no "legal basis under European law." Peter Schaar, head of the European Commission's Article 29 Data Protection Working Party, will give a final report to European Union officials …

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by Brett Murphy

White House and Republican congressional negotiators decided over the weekend to move forward with a definitional change in proposed legislation on military commissions that would broaden the meaning of "unlawful enemy combatant" and allow the detention and trial by commission of a larger spectrum of suspects, the Washington Post reported Tuesday. While the the …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

The US Supreme Court granted certiorari in nine cases Tuesday less than a week ahead of the official opening of its 2006 Term on October 2. The grants were decided in the Court's long conference Monday following a summer break and were picked from a pool of some 1900 petitions. Several of the cases are expected to …

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by Brett Murphy

A tentative agreement has been made on domestic surveillance legislation after Republican negotiators agreed to remove language that would have implicitly recognized the constitutionality of warrantless wiretapping from the National Security Surveillance Act of 2006, GOP officials announced Monday. Senator Arlen Specter, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman and sponsor of …

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by Holly Manges Jones

Thailand's new military leadership, which seized power in a coup last week, said Tuesday that a temporary constitution has been drafted that appoints the military rulers as advisers to any interim government. Army Commander-in-Chief Gen. Sonthi Boonyaratkalin said the document will be submitted to academics for their review and then given to King Bhumibol Adulyadej …

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by Holly Manges Jones

A federal judge Monday stopped the sale of oil and gas rights on approximately 1.7 million acres of protected land on Alaska's North Slope, which the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) had planned for Wednesday to recover an estimated 2 billion barrels of oil sitting under the land. The sale of …

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by Holly Manges Jones

Saddam Hussein was thrown out of court Tuesday for the third time by new chief judge Mohammed Oreibi al-Khalifa, who took over the genocide trial after the former chief judge was removed by the Iraqi government last week. Oreibi opened Tuesday's hearing by telling Saddam that he would have …

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