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Legal news from Tuesday, October 17, 2006
by Robert DeVries

A European Parliament delegation met with Romanian lawmaker Norica Nicolai on Tuesday as part of its ongoing investigation into allegations that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) held terror suspects in secret prisons throughout eastern Europe as part of its rendition program. Nicolai, who …

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by Lisl Brunner

An independent United Nations commission released a report on Tuesday calling for criminal investigations into the former prime minister of East Timor, Mari Alkatiri and four other former government officials in relation to armed confrontations between the government and military that left 37 dead earlier this year. The …

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by Robert DeVries

The nephew of assassinated Egyptian President Anwar Sadat began a sit-in in front of Egypt's parliament on Tuesday to protest his upcoming military trial for implicating the Egyptian army in his uncle's assassination 25 years ago. Talat al-Sadat declared his intent to boycott his trial on Wednesday, claiming his right to a defense …

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by Ned Mulcahy

Dr. Lester M. Crawford, former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), pleaded guilty to charges of conflict of interest and false writing at his arraignment hearing Tuesday afternoon in front of US Magistrate Judge Deborah Robinson. Both crimes are misdemeanors and carry a combined maximum penalty …

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by Lisl Brunner

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has suggested in a speech delivered in the UK that a different name be used to enact the institutional reforms set out in the failed European Constitution, echoing a similar notion advanced earlier this year by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and EU …

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by Katerina Ossenova

China is building a large barbed wire and concrete fence along parts of its border with North Korea, according to farmers and visitors in the area. A Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman refused to comment or release information on border security. But experts and an official speaking on condition of anonymity told the Associated …

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by Jeannie Shawl

A federal judge in Houston on Tuesday vacated the conviction and dismissed the indictment of Enron founder Ken Lay. Lay was convicted in May on fraud and conspiracy charges for providing investors with false and misleading financial information from 1999 up until Enron filed bankruptcy …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Thai Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont said Tuesday that Thailand will remain under martial law but will ease restrictions on political gatherings. Martial law currently prohibits gatherings of more than five people. The interim government, formally installed October 9 after receiving the approval of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej, will allow meetings …

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by Katerina Ossenova

A federal judge Monday rejected Missouri's lethal injection protocols as unconstitutional for the second time. Last month, US District Judge Fernando Gaitan ordered Missouri to submit new protocols by October 27 for carrying out the state death penalty. The decision is in response to a lawsuit …

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by Brett Murphy

The music industry filed lawsuits Tuesday against 8,000 defendants in 17 countries for allegedly participating in illegal file-sharing. The industry, represented by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), reported that its latest wave of lawsuits targets people who upload copyrighted songs to file-sharing networks. Many of those being sued are parents of children who are …

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by Brett Murphy

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has said that the organization will monitor polling places during the upcoming mid-term elections on November 7 in ten states chosen in part because of a history of problems in those locations. NAACP President Bruce Gordon stated Monday that the organization "will take steps …

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by Brett Murphy

The chief judge presiding over Saddam Hussein's genocide trial agreed Tuesday to allow two lawyers representing one of Hussein's co-defendants to return to court. The lawyers had been participating in a boycott of the trial, but Sultan Hashim Al-Tai, Hussein's defense minister, requested that Judge Mohammed Oreibi al-Khalifa give the lawyers leave …

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by Jeannie Shawl

President George W. Bush signed the Military Commissions Act of 2006 Tuesday. The US Congress approved the bill late last month after leaders of the House of Representatives decided to forego the process of reconciling slightly-divergent House and Senate versions, with the House instead adopting the Senate version of the legislation.The military …

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by Holly Manges Jones

A lawyer for former Guantanamo Bay detainee Murat Kurnaz, a Turkish citizen who is also a legal resident of Germany, said Tuesday that Germany is investigating allegations of abuse by German soldiers. Kurnaz, who spent almost five years at the US prison camp in Guantanamo Bay before being returned to Germany …

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by Holly Manges Jones

The trial of six suspected Islamic militants accused of planning an attack against Dutch politicians began Monday in the Netherlands. The defendants include twenty-year-old Samir Azzouz, whose previous acquittal sparked intense criticism of Dutch anti-terrorism laws. Azzouz has been arrested three times in the Netherlands and was acquitted last year of participating in a …

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by Holly Manges Jones

The number of hate crimes committed in the US in 2005 fell 6 percent when compared to 2004 numbers, but the percentage of race-based incidents increased slightly, according to figures in a new report from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). In 2005, police forces across the country reported 7,163 hate crimes based on …

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by Holly Manges Jones

Two terror suspects whose movement had been restricted under control orders in the UK were reported as missing Monday. One of the individuals is an Iraqi who appears to have been missing for several months, while the other suspect, a British man of Pakistani origin, escaped through the window of a mental health facility earlier …

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