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Legal news from Wednesday, January 9, 2008
by Mike Rosen-Molina

A Palestinian doctor detained in Libya for eight years after being accused of deliberately infecting hundreds of children with the HIV virus filed a complaint with the UN Human Rights Committee (UNHRC) against Libya Wednesday, alleging he was tortured during his detention. Decisions by the UNHRC are not binding, but it could ask that …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

UK prosecutors Wednesday dropped charges against Dennis Pasquill, a civil servant in the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office who was accused of leaking secret documents about CIA rendition flights to the New Statesman and the Observer newspapers in violation of the Official Secrets Act. Pasquill's lawyer said the decision to drop …

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by Andrew Gilmore

US District Court Judge Henry H. Kennedy, Jr. Wednesday refused to order an inquiry into the CIA's destruction of videotapes showing the interrogation of terror suspects. In denying the motion brought by lawyers for a number of Guantanamo Bay detainees, Kennedy concluded that there was no evidence that the Bush administration violated …

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by Patrick Porter

A lawyer for two UK residents formerly held by the US at the Guantanamo Bay prison argued in a British court Wednesday that they should not be extradited to Spain to face terror charges. Jamil el-Banna and Omar Deghayes face transfer to that country after crusading Spanish anti-terror judge Baltasar Garzón …

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by Deirdre Jurand

An aid worker was charged in a French court Wednesday with conspiring to allow illegal residents into the country in connection with an aborted airlift of 103 supposed Darfur orphans from Chad to France last year. The indictment comes just two weeks after Alain Peligat and five other workers with French charity Zoe's Ark [advocacy website, …

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by Alexis Unkovic

The Public Interest Declassification Board Wednesday pressed President George W. Bush for improvements to the existing US records declassification scheme in an era of increased government secrecy. In a new report, the group recommended establishing a National Declassification Program under the National Archivist, promulgating a system for identifying historically significant information, and …

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by Alexis Unkovic

Pakistani security forces have unfairly targeted members of the Pakistan People's Party (PPP), the party of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, in an effort to prevent them from participating next month in the country's postponed elections, PPP officials said Wednesday. Government officials denied allegations that any arrests were made …

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by Alexis Unkovic

A military judge at Camp Pendleton Wednesday set a trial date of February 25 for the court-martial of US Marine Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich who faces charges of voluntary manslaughter, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, dereliction of duty and obstruction of justice in connection to the killing of 24 Iraqi civilians at Haditha [USMC timeline; JURIST …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The European Commission Wednesday dropped its antitrust case against Apple's iTunes after Apple announced it would equalize prices for music downloads from iTunes in Europe. A UK consumer protection organization had filed a formal complaint with the Commission, which launched an investigation in April 2007 into whether sales …

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by Katerina Ossenova

US District Court Judge Paul Huck denied a request Wednesday by former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega to block his extradition to France. The latest ruling follows the decision by US District Court Judge William Hoeveler in September 2007 to reject arguments by Noriega's lawyers that his extradition to France would …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments Wednesday in the consolidated cases of Crawford v. Marion County Election Board, 07-21, and Indiana Democratic Party v. Rokita, where the Court considered the constitutionality of Indiana's controversial voter identification statute which requires voters to present photo identification …

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by Brett Murphy

Taiwanese prosecutors filed an appeal Wednesday to a decision by the Taiwan High Court last month upholding the acquittal of former Taipei mayor Ma Ying-jeou on graft charges. Prosecutors hope that the Taiwan Supreme Court will clarify the legality of the Taiwanese system that allows high-ranking public officials access to special …

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by Brett Murphy

A federal judge in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas has ruled that journalists and the public do not have the right to view every part of the execution process under the First Amendment. Judge Susan Webber Wright ruled Monday that, unlike court proceedings, public access to executions is not needed to ensure …

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by Leslie Schulman

A Hong Kong court ruled Tuesday that the Chinese special administrative region's Telecommunications Ordinance was unconstitutional because it violates the freedom of expression guaranteed by Hong Kong's Basic Law and Bill of Rights by giving the government too much authority in deciding who will receive broadcasting licenses. The ruling involved local station Citizens' Radio, which …

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by Leslie Schulman

The US Army said Tuesday that Army Sgt. 1st Class Trey A. Corrales will be court-martialed on charges of premeditated murder for his alleged role in the killing of an unarmed Iraqi civilian near the Iraqi city of Kirkuk. Corrales was charged in July with the premeditated murder of an unspecified …

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by Leslie Schulman

The US Justice Department has withdrawn its appeal of a federal judge's decision to invalidate a 2005 regulation governing the management of national forests, advocacy groups said Tuesday. The appeal was filed in a lawsuit brought by environmental advocacy groups alleging that the Department of Agriculture created a new rule for the forest planning …

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