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Legal news from Friday, January 5, 2007
by Caitlin Price

The Presidency of the European Union, currently held by Germany, reiterated the EU's opposition to the death penalty "under all circumstances" in a statement released Friday, as two Saddam Hussein co-defendants in Iraq continued to face possible hanging. Former chief judge of Iraq's Hussein-era Revolutionary Court Awad Hamed al-Bandar and former …

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by Caitlin Price

Imam Fawaz Damra, former leader of Ohio's largest mosque, the Islamic Center of Cleveland, has been deported to the West Bank via Jordan, US immigration officials announced Friday. Born in the Palestinian Authority, Damra was indicted in 2003 on charges of concealing ties to alleged terrorist groups when he applied for US citizenship; he was …

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by Brett Murphy

The number of death sentences issued in 2006 reached the lowest level in 30 years, according to a 2006 year-end report issued by the Death Penalty Information Center (DPIC). The DPIC reported that there were at most 114 death sentences issued in 2006, as opposed to 128 in 2005 and the 1996 high …

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by Caitlin Price

The government of Southern Sudan, an autonomous region in Sudan, will join the United Nations in probing alleged sex crimes committed by international peacekeepers against at least twenty Sudanese children in Juba, according to a statement from the Southern Sudanese minister for presidential affairs Thursday. The statement promised a thorough inquiry, emphasizing: "If …

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by Brett Murphy

The Catholic Diocese of Spokane has agreed to settle molestation claims against priests on Thursday for $48 million as part of a Chapter 11 reorganization plan. Victims and a federal bankruptcy judge must still approve the deal, however, Judge Gregg W. Zive of the Nevada Bankruptcy Court, who is mediating the settlement, said he believes …

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by Brett Murphy

The British Ministry of Defence said Thursday that nine soldiers videotaped beating Iraqi civilians in an incident in southern Iraq in 2004 will not face charges before military courts-martial. The Army Prosecuting Authority (APA) said that while there was enough evidence to bring assault charges against two of the soldiers, the time period …

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by Jeannie Shawl

The White House has defended President Bush's attachment of a signing statement to the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, dismissing arguments that the statement changes administration policy on when mail can be opened without a warrant. Bush signed the law in late December and attached a statement, which said in part:The executive branch …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

President Bush told reporters at the White House Thursday that last weekend's videoed hanging of Saddam Hussein amidst taunts from guards and witnesses fell short of what he would have liked, but nonetheless insisted on the legitimacy of the proceeding. Speaking at a news conference with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Bush said:Saddam Hussein was given a trial …

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