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Legal news from Thursday, February 8, 2007
by Gabriel Haboubi

A French judge has charged two police officers connected to a case that sparked three weeks of rioting outside Paris and in other parts of France in 2005. The officers were charged Wednesday with “non-assistance to people in danger”, and face up to 5 years in prison and up to a $97,400 fine for their roles …

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by Robert DeVries

Former Baathist military operations officer Rashid Hussein Mohammed claimed during his genocide trial before the Iraqi High Tribunal Thursday that he was just defending his country against Iran during the Anfal campaign of the late 1980s, and called for US military commanders to be tried for their crimes in the current Iraq war. Mohammed …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

The prosecutor in the genocide case against former Ethiopian dictator Mengistu Haile Miriam announced Thursday that he is appealing last month’s sentence of life imprisonment, and will again push for the death penalty. Of the three sentencing judges, one opted for the death penalty, while the other two felt life sentences were …

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by Robert DeVries

Lawyers for the three recently re-charged Guantanamo detainees renewed their condemnation of new military commission rules Thursday, telling the Associated Press that the tight deadlines established by the rules will prevent extended investigation into the reliability of the evidence brought against their clients. Navy lawyer Lt. Cmdr. Charles Swift, appointed to …

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by Leslie Schulman

Iraq Deputy Health Minister Hakim Zamili has been arrested in an apparent security crackdown in Baghdad, according to a report by the US military Thursday. According to military officials, Zamili had been infiltrating members of the Mehdi Army militia, headed by militant Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, into the Iraq …

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by Leslie Schulman

Romania must return property it nationalized during the 1950s, or else pay overdue compensation, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled Thursday. The judgment came in two separate cases both filed by plaintiffs alleging that the Communist regime unlawfully seized their buildings and apartments in …

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by Leslie Schulman

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) has achieved marked success in bringing international war criminals to justice, chief prosecutor Carla Del Ponte told a conference on Thursday. Del Ponte, who has served as chief prosecutor for 8 years and is scheduled to step down later this year, …

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by Joshua Pantesco

The US Senate Judiciary Committee voted 13-6 on Thursday to send a bill to the Senate floor which would permit US district courts to appoint temporary US Attorneys when those spots become vacant, reversing a provision in the Patriot Act reauthorization that allowed the US attorney general to replace …

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by Joshua Pantesco

US Marine Cpl. Trent Thomas withdrew his guilty plea in the second day of his sentencing hearing Thursday on unpremeditated murder charges stemming from the alleged murder of Iraqi civilian Hashim Ibrahim Awad in the village of Hamdania in April 2006. Thomas, who pleaded guilty in January, said that he …

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by Joshua Pantesco

The European Commission (EC) unveiled a mandatory CO2 emissions strategy Wednesday that would impose mandatory carbon dioxide (CO2) limits on all cars by 2012. Today's average European car emits approximately 160 grams of CO2 per kilometer; the new strategy would curb emissions at around 130 grams per kilometer. The strategy is …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the US Thursday to cooperate with proceedings initiated against a US soldier in the shooting death of an Italian intelligence agent in Iraq. An Italian judge Wednesday ordered New York Army National Guard soldier Mario Lozano to stand trial on charges of …

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by Joe Shaulis

A federal district judge issued an order Wednesday giving the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) until the end of June to finalize a proposed rule removing the American bald eagle from the federal endangered species list. US District Judge John R. Tunheim of the District of Minnesota originally set a …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Comments by the commander of Guantanamo Bay that Australian detainee David Hicks continues to be a dangerous terrorist were cited by one of Hicks' lawyers Thursday as an example of why Hicks will not receive a fair trial. Rear Admiral Harry Harris, commander of Joint Task Force-Guantanamo Bay …

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by Joshua Pantesco

Legitimate asylum seekers in the US may be ignored or detained for months or even years given the current expedited removal practices of domestic security officials, according to a report card released Thursday by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (CIRF), a bipartisan commission established by Congress in 1998. The report finds fault …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Amnesty International accused Mexico in a report released Wednesday of having a "gravely flawed" criminal justice system in which human rights abuses are perpetuated and criminals are rarely punished. The report cites evidence of arbitrary detentions, torture, fabrication of evidence and unfair trials and claims that the victims are often indigenous Mexicans, the …

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by Joe Shaulis

Two state legislators asked the attorney general of Texas Wednesday to issue an opinion on the legality of Gov. Rick Perry's executive order mandating that sixth-grade girls be vaccinated for the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV). The lawmakers also requested that Attorney General Greg Abbott advise the legislature on …

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by Joshua Pantesco

Nashville is set to conduct all official business in the English language after the Nashville City Council voted 23-14 Tuesday to amend the City Charter to declare English the official language of the city government. Mayor Bill Purcell is consulting with city attorneys to determine whether to sign, veto, or take no action on the bill. …

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by Joshua Pantesco

No formal peace treaty will be concluded between Japan and Russia until Russia relinquishes control of several Japanese islands it has occupied since the end of World War II, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a rally on Wednesday. Possession of the island chain, known as the Kurils Islands in Russia and the Northern Territories [Japan MOFA …

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