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Legal news from Friday, May 11, 2007
by Mike Rosen-Molina

A Moroccan man convicted of aiding the Sept. 11, 2001 hijackers lost an appeal to Germany's top criminal court Friday. Mounir el Motassadeq was convicted in November of being an accessory to murder for helping to protect the hijackers and maintain their facade of being regular university students; in January he was sentenced to …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

Cuba Friday accused the US of violating international anti-terrorism treaties by freeing anti-Castro militant Luis Posada Carriles on bail and afterwards dismissing an indictment against him. In a statement published in state newspaper Granma, the Cuban government said Posada Carriles' release went against UN Security Council Resolution No. 1373 (2001), the …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The Thai government announced Friday that it has decided not to sue internet search giant Google after the company agreed to remove a YouTube video considered insulting to Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej. In April Thailand banned access to the popular video-sharing website YouTube, now owned by Google, for hosting a video …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

Sudan may have violated international law by conducting "indiscriminate and disproportionate" air attacks in late April on at least five Darfur villages, according to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour. Sudanese officials have denied the attacks. Arbour said helicopter gunships and Antonov aircraft were responsible for the attacks on villages near El …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Britain's Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said Friday that 11 Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) officers will not face disciplinary action for the fatal shooting of a Brazilian man two weeks after the July 2005 London transit bombings. The IPCC, however, is waiting to determine whether the four most senior officers …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

A two-week UN conference to toughen the Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons failed to reach any agreement Friday, as the United States and Iran traded accusations of bad faith. The US and its allies said Iran stalled the process by objecting to a phrase emphasizing the "need for full compliance" with the treaty, a …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has dismissed a third judge from the Ukrainian Constitutional Court, little more than a week after dismissing two others for alleged oath and ethics violations. The Russian Itar-Tass news service Friday quoted Constitutional Court chairman Ivan Dombrovsky as saying in response that he was "deeply worried by …

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by Jeannie Shawl

US District Judge Thomas Hogan approved an offer of immunity Friday for former Department of Justice aide Monica Goodling, clearing the way for Goodling's testimony before Congress on the firings of eight US Attorneys. Under Hogan's order, Goodling may not refuse to testify. The House Judiciary Committee voted in April to …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Two Vietnamese human rights lawyers were sentenced Friday for violating Article 88 of the Vietnamese criminal code by advocating that Vietnam adopt a multi-party system of government. Nguyen Van Dai and Le Thi Cong Nhan were arrested in February after they hosted a training session on human rights law. Dai, who said he rejected …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Kamal Labwani, a Syrian political dissident who founded a pro-democracy group, was sentenced to 12 years in prison Thursday for "encouraging attack against Syria" after contacting a foreign country. Labwani met with officials from the White House during a visit to the US in 2005, and was arrested at the airport when he returned to Syria. The …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Ali Hassan al-Majid, known in the Western media as "Chemical Ali", told the Iraqi High Tribunal Thursday that he did not use or issue an order to use chemical weapons against Kurdish rebels in the late 1980s. During defense closing arguments, al-Majid defended the government of Saddam Hussein for its actions during …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Maj. Gen. Richard A. Huck, commander of the US Second Marine Division in Iraq when 24 Iraqi civilians were killed at Haditha in November 2005, told a military panel Thursday that his staff failed to inform him of allegations that the civilians may have been killed in violation of the law of armed conflict, …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski said Thursday that the judges of Poland's Constitutional Tribunal could be charged if they act improperly in ruling on the legality of a so-called Lustration Law [RFE backgrounder; BI backgrounder on "lustration" generally] passed in October 2006 requiring over 700,000 Polish professionals - academics, journalists, lawyers, diplomats and …

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