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Legal news from Thursday, December 20, 2007
by Mike Rosen-Molina

The Australian Federal Court on Friday local time upheld a decision to reinstate the work visa of Dr. Mohammad Haneef, who was detained by Australian authorities in July in connection with July's attempted UK car bomb terror attacks. Australian Immigration and Citizenship Minister Kevin Andrews revoked Haneef's work visa and placed him under …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The White House said Thursday that it will appeal a Monday ruling that held White House visitor logs to be public documents, asking a federal judge not to force the logs' disclosure in the meantime. On Monday, US District Judge Royce C. Lamberth rejected a Bush administration bid to have the …

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by Jeannie Shawl

US military judge Navy Capt. Keith Allred ruled Wednesday that military commission proceedings against Guantanamo Bay detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan can proceed, denying a defense motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction. Allred had earlier agreed to hold a hearing to determine whether Hamdan should be considered a prisoner of war [JURIST …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The Bush administration is abandoning a plan to give political appointees in the Defense Department a role in the promotion of military lawyers working as members of the Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps, the Boston Globe reported Wednesday. Critics of the proposed plan said that increased politicization of the promotion process would prevent JAGs …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The legal advisor to the Convening Authority for Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay, US Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas W.Hartmann, Wednesday denied accusations by former Guantanamo Bay chief military prosecutor Col. Morris Davis that he was pressured to hold secret trials and that politics is interfering with Guantanamo prosecutions. In a Los …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

A judge in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Thursday found alleged Real IRA member Sean Gerard Hoey not guilty of murder in relation to the 1998 Omagh bombing, the worst terrorist attack in Northern Ireland history. Judge Reginald Weir ruled that there was insufficient DNA evidence linking Hoey to the bomb to prove beyond …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

Three former UK residents held at Guantanamo Bay who were released from US custody Wednesday and then detained by UK authorities the same day on their arrival home were released from UK custody Thursday. Libyan Omar Deghayes and Algerian Abdennour Sameur were arrested and Jordanian Jamil el Banna was detained under the Terrorism Act. …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The US Senate passed the Block Burmese JADE (Junta's Anti-Democratic Efforts) Act of 2007 Wednesday, a bill that would impose new economic sanctions and travel restrictions on leaders from Myanmar. The bill is intended to push the military government to restore democratic rule. US Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE), one of the sponsors of …

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by Brett Murphy

The UN General Assembly has passed a resolution against "defamation of religion," expressing concern about laws that have led to religions discrimination and profiling since Sept. 11. The resolution urges all:States to provide, within their respective legal and constitutional systems, adequate protection against acts of hatred, discrimination, intimidation and coercion resulting from defamation of religions, to …

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by Jeannie Shawl

US Attorney General Michael Mukasey sent a memo to top Justice Department staff Wednesday advising them of a shift in DOJ policy that will limit who can discuss ongoing investigations with the White House. After he was nominated as attorney general, Mukasey promised that the DOJ would maintain greater independence from the …

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by Jeannie Shawl

A Chinese court has sentenced former prosecutor Li Baojin to death after convicting him Wednesday of accepting bribes and embezzling money. Li was found guilty of accepting $760,000 in bribes over a 10-year period while he worked as chief prosecutor and deputy police chief in Tianjin, as well as embezzling $1.9 million from the prosecutor's office. A court official, …

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by Jeannie Shawl

Cambodia has lodged a formal complaint with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon over a UN official's comments earlier this month criticizing Cambodia's human rights record, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said Thursday. Speaking at a rally in Phnom Penh to mark International Human Rights Day on December 10, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the situation of human rights in …

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by Jeannie Shawl

South African National Prosecuting Authority acting Director Mokotedi Mpshe said Thursday that prosecutors have sufficient evidence to support corruption charges against Jacob Zuma, who earlier this week was elected leader of the African National Congress, putting him in position to become the country's next president. Zuma has been facing corruption …

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by Brett Murphy

The US Senate and House of Representatives Wednesday passed by voice vote the NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007, which closes a loophole that allowed Virginia Tech shooter Seung-Hui Cho to purchase firearms despite a court order mandating psychiatric treatment. The US House first approved the bill in June; the …

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by Jeannie Shawl

The US Central Intelligence Agency will turn over information to Congress regarding the CIA's destruction of videotapes showing the interrogation of terror suspects, Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-TX), chairman of the House Select Intelligence Committee, said Wednesday. Reyes' committee had begun the process of drawing up subpoenas for CIA documents after the Justice Department initially instructed the …

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