Legal news from Wednesday, January 10, 2007
20:01 EDT

[JURIST] Democrats in the US Senate [official website] on Wednesday renewed efforts to pass legislation that would grant temporary legal status to illegal immigrant workers who work in agriculture, after House Republicans stalled bicameral negotiations last year. The Senate passed [JURIST report] a bill [S 2611 summary] in May that [read more]

20:01 EDT

[JURIST] Lawmakers in the Italian Senate [official website] have started weighing proposals for legislation that would legalize civil unions in the country. The process in the Senate's Justice Committee comes a month after Senate leaders requested [JURIST report] that a bill be drafted by January 31 that would give legal [read more]

19:01 EDT

[JURIST] Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) [advocacy website] on Wednesday filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF; press release] against the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) [official website] in the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website], seeking compliance with a CREW Freedom of Information [read more]

19:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit [official website] has announced it will rehear arguments on a preliminary injunction imposed last year [JURIST report] which prevented South Dakota from enforcing a 2005 abortion law [text]. Enforcement of the law was initially halted [JURIST report] in 2005, pending [read more]

18:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] heard oral arguments [transcript, PDF] Wednesday in the consolidated cases Davenport v. Washington Education Association and Washington v. Washington Education Association [Duke Law Backgrounder], 05-1589 and 05-1657 [dockets], where the Court must decide whether a state campaign finance law that [read more]

15:01 EDT

[JURIST] A federal appeals court heard oral arguments Wednesday on whether the government should be permitted to reinstate a charge against alleged terrorist Jose Padilla [BBC profile; JURIST news archive]. The charge, conspiracy to "murder, kidnap and maim persons in a foreign country," carries a maximum sentence of life in [read more]

15:01 EDT

[JURIST] A coordinated hunger strike has halted proceedings before Bosnia's national war crimes after multiple defendants boycotted the court Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, demanding to be tried under the criminal code in place at the time of their alleged crimes, not under the 2003 criminal code [text] which authorizes forty-year [read more]

13:01 EDT

[JURIST] Northern Ireland must abide by a gay rights bill that came into effect January 1 after the House of Lords voted Tuesday to keep the regulations in place. Lord Morrow opened debate [transcript] on the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 [text], a bill which prohibits businesses [read more]

12:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] ruled Wednesday that the causation standard for railroad negligence under the Federal Employers Liability Act [45 USC 51-60 text] is the same as that for employee contributory negligence under the Act. In Norfolk Southern v. Sorrell [Duke Law case backgrounder], [read more]

12:01 EDT

[JURIST] Peru plans to mount a legal challenge to a decision from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) [official website] ordering a $20 million judgment be paid to the families of deceased rebels and calling for the government to publicly honor the rebels, Peruvian President Alan Garcia [official website] [read more]

11:01 EDT

[JURIST] US military mental health workers had diagnosed an Army soldier as a homicidal threat three months before he was involved in the alleged rape and murder of a 14-year-old Iraqi girl [JURIST news archive] and the murder of her family in the Mahmudiya (also "Mahmoudiya") area in March 2006, [read more]

11:01 EDT

[JURIST] The first US execution of 2007 took place Tuesday, when the state of Oklahoma executed a man by lethal injection for the 1992 murders of four people. The US Supreme Court denied [order, PDF; AP report] Corey Duane Hamilton's request for a stay of execution and certiorari review on [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US military prison for terror suspects at Guantanano Bay, Cuba [JURIST news archive] drew renewed criticism from rights defenders Tuesday as the camp approached the fifth anniversary of the arrival of the first detainees from Afghanistan. Terry Davis [CV], Secretary General of the Council of Europe [official profile], [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] Iraqi President Jalal Talabani [official website, in Arabic; BBC profile] said Wednesday that the execution of two co-defendants of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] should be delayed "to see what the circumstances are," without offering any further explanation. Awad Hamed al-Bandar [Wikipedia profile], former chief judge of Iraq's Saddam [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] Moroccan-born Mounir al-Motassadeq [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] on Tuesday appealed the 15-year prison sentence [JURIST report] handed down by a German court earlier this week for Motassadeq's role in assisting the men who carried out the Sept. 11 attacks [JURIST news archive]. Lawyers for Motassadeq also said Tuesday [read more]

08:01 EDT

[JURIST] President Bush has cleared the way for drilling of oil and natural gas in parts of Bristol Bay, Alaska, and the central Gulf of Mexico [US Interior Dept. maps, PDF]. In a memorandum [text] to the secretary of interior dated Tuesday, Bush modified a moratorium [US Minerals Management Service [read more]

07:01 EDT

[JURIST] US Army Spc. Juston R. Graber pleaded guilty Tuesday to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in connection with the deaths of three Iraqi detainees in Thar Thar, a town near Samarra, some 60 miles north of Baghdad, but pleaded not guilty to more serious charges [JURIST report] of [read more]

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