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Legal news from Friday, June 15, 2007
by Gabriel Haboubi

The Russian delegation to the Extraordinary Conference of the States Parties to the CFE Treaty in Vienna expressed displeasure at the close of talks Friday and repeated calls for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to ratify the 1999 revision of the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) treaty, insisting that the original 1990 CFE …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

Following a Friday meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski told the Polish daily newspaper Dziennik he was optimistic that a compromise on a controversial voting system for the European constitution could be reached, although he later said it was too early to give …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

Seven men who conspired with British al Qaeda leader Dhiren Barot to launch attacks in Britain and the US were sentenced to a combined 136 years in prison Friday in London's Woolwich Crown Court. The shortest sentence handed down was 15 years imprisonment, while the longest was …

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by Michael Sung

Colombia's Congress approved legislation giving same-sex couples who have cohabited for over a period of two years similar rights as regular common law marriages Thursday, which will guarantee equal rights in areas such as welfare benefits and property inheritance. The measure, opposed by the Roman Catholic church but supported by Colombian President Alvaro Uribe [official website in Spanish; BBC …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

Rights complaints by Muslims in the US rose 25 percent in 2006, according to an annual report on civil rights released Thursday by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). The group attributed the jump to a rise in anti-Muslim bias, particularly seen in cases involving delays in immigration proceedings. The majority of reported …

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by Michael Sung

The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB) Friday announced it is investigating allegations made by Russian businessman Andrei Lugovoy that the deceased former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko and alleged coup plotter Boris Berezovsky spied for Great Britain. Lugovoy, who is currently sought by …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said Thursday that it has filed suit against the heads of a technology company and two lawyers who assisted the company in an illegal "pump and dump" penny stock scheme. Arizona lawyer David Stocker and Texas lawyer Phillip Offill Jr, the latter …

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by Michael Sung

Japanese district courts in Kochi and Sapporo Friday rejected the claims of two groups of Japanese abandoned in China as children after World War II, ruling that the current Japanese government was not obligated to compensate the so-called "war orphans" because Japan had no obligation to to assist their repatriation and assimilation back …

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by Michael Sung

The US military announced Thursday that charges against Lt. Col. William H. Steele, the former commander of the 451st Military Police Detachment in charge of the detention facility at Camp Cropper in Iraq, has been referred to a court-martial on charges of aiding the enemy, unauthorized possession of classified information, disobeying …

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by Michael Sung

The US Department of Justice Office of Inspector General (OIG) and Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) confirmed in a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday that an ongoing DOJ internal investigation into politicized hiring decisions has expanded to include an alleged March meeting between former US DOJ aide Monica Goodling and Attorney …

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by Michael Sung

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled Thursday that Javaid Iqbal, who alleges he was detained "solely because of race, religion, and national origin" following the September 11 terrorist attacks and subjected to mistreatment during detention, can proceed with civil lawsuits against former Attorney General John Ashcroft, FBI Director Robert …

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by Michael Sung

A five-member team of UN investigators concluded in a confidential report to the UN Security Council disclosed Thursday by the New York Times that former Liberian President Charles Taylor may retain control over large sums of personal assets located in Nigeria and Liberia. Taylor claims he is indigent, and refused to participate in the …

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by Michael Sung

A federal jury convicted former Ku Klux Klan (KKK) member James Ford Seale Thursday of two counts of kidnapping resulting in death and one count conspiracy for Seale's role in the kidnapping and death of two 19-year old teens in Mississippi in 1964. Seale, who was previously arrested on suspicion of kidnapping Henry Dee …

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by Michael Sung

A Russian military court convicted four army soldiers in the January 2002 killing of six Chechen civilians Thursday, sentencing them to between 14 and 9 years in prison. The four defendants, three of which remain fugitives and were tried in absentia, had previously been tried and acquitted, but the Russian Supreme Court overturned their second …

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by Melissa Bancroft

A top US Justice Department official testified Thursday that the Bush Administration remains opposed to a proposed shield law that would protect media from federal pressure to reveal sources. Assistant Attorney General Rachel Brand testified during a House Judiciary Committee hearing that the DOJ has a "longstanding commitment …

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by Michael Sung

US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NE) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said in a joint statement Thursday that senators will return to the stalled Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007 after they finish work on an energy bill. President Bush has pressed the immigration proposal, which stalled after …

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