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Legal news from Thursday, September 28, 2006
by James M Yoch Jr

The US Senate approved its version of the military commissions bill in a 65-34 vote late Thursday after narrowly rejecting several amendments, including one sponsored by Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) which would have eliminated a highly-controversial provision stripping detainees of the …

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by Kate Heneroty

Members of the US House Energy and Commerce Committee lambasted [chairman's statement] executives of the Hewlett-Packard Corporation Thursday for their role in a corporate espionage scandal and demanded to know why company executives and attorneys did not put a stop to the program. In a special hearing committee members grilled the …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli made a formal apology Thursday to Maher Arar, the Canadian citizen who on suspicion of being linked to Al Qaeda was deported from the US to Syria in 2002 and tortured there. Zaccardelli publicly accepted all of the recently-released findings of the Arar …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Lawyers for Saddam Hussein called for an end to Saddam's genocide trial in a statement issued Thursday, rejecting the proceeding as nothing more than a "farce" used to "offend the dignity of president Saddam and his comrades." As quoted by AFP, the statement claimed that the "trial has nothing to do with law …

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by Kate Heneroty

US District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor on Thursday rejected the Bush Administration’s proposal to continue its domestic surveillance program while her August 17 decision finding the program unconstitutional and ordering its shutdown is being appealed, but did allow the program to continue for one more week to allow the …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The Belgian Data Privacy Commission released an advisory report Thursday concluding that the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), the Belgium-based international banking cooperative, has been supplying the US Department of Treasury with "massive amounts of personal data for surveillance without effective and clear legal basis and independent controls in …

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by Holly Manges Jones

Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang has denied a BBC report that human organs were being routinely taken from executed prisoners and sold to foreigners, saying that the donors must first give written consent to the sale of their organs before any such transaction takes place. Gang said the use of prisoners' organs is "very …

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by Holly Manges Jones

Hewlett-Packard announced the immediate resignation of its general counsel Thursday prior to a hearing held by a US House Energy and Commerce Committee panel to question key company officials on their knowledge of a telephone spying scandal. Ann Baskins was still scheduled to testify before the committee Thursday but …

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by Holly Manges Jones

US District Judge Susan Dlott ruled Wednesday that an Ohio law prohibiting use of the abortion-inducing pill RU-486 is unconstitutional. The law was modeled after a regulation issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) six years ago that warned against administering the drug after the seventh week of a woman's pregnancy. Planned …

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by Jaime Jansen

US District Judge Edward Lodge of the District of Idaho on Wednesday ruled that former US Attorney General John Ashcroft does not have absolute immunity from a lawsuit alleging that the government wrongfully arrested plaintiff Abdullah al Kidd as a material witness in a failed computer terrorism case against a classmate …

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by Jaime Jansen

French judge Jean-Claude Kross Wednesday postponed a verdict in the trial of six former Guantanamo Bay detainees accused of attending combat training at an al Qaeda camp in Afghanistan, saying the court needs more information on French intelligence missions to Guantanamo. Defense lawyers for the six men, all French nationals, accuse …

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by Jaime Jansen

US State Department officials testified Wednesday that the number of refugees admitted to the US has fallen by 23 percent as a result of provisions in the USA Patriot Act and the Real ID Act that deny entry to any person that has provided …

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by Holly Manges Jones

A writer of the draft constitution for Thailand confirmed Thursday that the country's military rulers, who seized control in a bloodless coup on September 19, will have a continued role in the otherwise-civilian government after a new prime minister is appointed. Meechai Ruchupan, a former Senate speaker and the military's current chief …

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by Holly Manges Jones

A federal judge Wednesday set a 2009 trial date for the lawsuit by computer chip-maker Advanced Micro Designs (AMD) against arch-rival Intel after ruling Tuesday that AMD cannot proceed in US courts with a major portion of its case alleging Intel committed anticompetitive practices outside the United …

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by Holly Manges Jones

The heirs of slaves, who filed federal lawsuits against companies that allegedly profited from slavery before the abolition of the practice in the United States, argued Wednesday in front of the US Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals that their cases should be heard. US District Judge Charles Norgle dismissed the …

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