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Legal news from Friday, March 16, 2007
by Gabriel Haboubi

The European Commission (EC) plans to develop a common fingerprint database that includes data collected from criminals convicted of serious crimes within member states, a spokesperson announced Friday. EC spokesperson Ana-Paula Laiss denied claims made in the London Times that the database would require fingerprints even from people released without charge. The fingerprint plan was …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

Nigerian Vice President Atiku Abubakar filed a lawsuit Friday against the Nigerian electoral commission after it issued a ruling Thursday prohibiting him from running in the upcoming April presidential. The commission cited the Nigerian constitution, which bars presidential candidates indicted for crimes before a court or executive panel, for its decision. …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

British coroner Andrew Walker ruled Friday that a US A-10 tank-buster "friendly fire" attack on a UK troop convoy that killed UK soldier Matty Hull "amounted to an assault. It was unlawful because there was no lawful reason for it and in that respect it was criminal." Walker's civilian inquiry, which had for a while …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

Judges appointed to the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) reached an agreement Friday on the most pressing points of contention over the Khmer Rouge genocide trial rules after a 10-day meeting. In a statement made at the end of the talks, the …

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by JURIST Staff

Former CIA operative Valerie Plame testified before the US House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Friday that the White House and US Department of State "carelessly and recklessly" blew her cover in an effort to discredit her diplomat-husband Joseph Wilson who had criticized US pre-war intelligence on Iraq. Plame's identity as a …

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by JURIST Staff

The president-elect of Russia's Chechen Republic accused Russian authorities Friday of torturing Chechen detainees. The allegations by Ramzan Kadyrov came just days after the Council of Europe's European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) released a report calling on Russia to address …

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by Lisl Brunner

Japanese Internet entrepreneur Takafumi Horie, 34, was convicted of securities law violations on Friday and sentenced to two and a half years in prison. Horie, whose rebellious style made him a media celebrity, received a harsher penalty than the suspended sentence that most convicted executives receive when they plead guilty and show remorse. Horie denies …

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by JURIST Staff

A bill to repeal the Maryland death penalty failed in the Maryland Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Thursday when the committee members tied in a 5-5 vote. Swing vote Sen. Alex X. Mooney (R) voted against the bill after unsuccessfully lobbying for an exemption for prisoners who kill again while serving a jail …

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by Lisl Brunner

Italy has asked the Italian Constitutional Court to cancel the indictments of 34 American and Italian intelligence officials in connection with the 2003 kidnapping and rendition of Egyptian cleric and suspected terrorist Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr from Italy. Lawyers for the state say prosecutors exceeded their …

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by Lisl Brunner

The Supreme Judicial Council of Pakistan Friday removed all restrictions on the liberty of Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, suspended for misconduct last week by President Pervez Musharraf. Chaudhry appeared in front of the Council for an initial hearing Tuesday and returned Friday to hear its …

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by Michael Sung

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled en banc Thursday that Robert Comer, an inmate on death row, "is competent to waive further proceedings... has chosen to do so voluntarily," paving the way for Comer's desire to allow his execution in Arizona to proceed. Comber, who was convicted in 1988 of one …

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by Michael Sung

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed testified Saturday at a military status hearing at Guantanamo Bay that he personally "decapitated with my blessed right hand the head of the American Jew, Daniel Pearl, in Karachi," according to a statement initially withheld from Wednesday's release of the hearing transcript to allow the notification of …

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by Michael Sung

A French court convicted a doctor for the poisoning death of a terminally ill cancer patient Thursday. Dr. Laurence Tramois was sentenced to a one-year suspended prison sentence for prescribing a fatal dose of potassium chloride that resulted in the death of Paulette Drualis in August 23, 2003. The case has stirred debate over the issue of euthanasia in …

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by Jeannie Shawl

The Japanese government has found no evidence that so-called Korean and Chinese "comfort women" were forced into sexual slavery during World War II, according to a cabinet statement provided to a Japanese lawmaker Friday. According to the statement, the government has not come across evidence that "directly shows so-called 'coercion' on the part of …

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by Jeannie Shawl

The Chinese National People's Congress on Friday approved a landmark law protecting private property by a 2799-52 vote. Chinese lawmakers have been considering the bill for over 13 years, and the final version grants equal protections to both public and private property and states that the "property of the state, the collective, …

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