Legal news from Tuesday, February 26, 2008
18:02 EDT

[JURIST] The human rights of inmates in Nigerian prisons are "systematically violated," Amnesty International [advocacy website] said in a Tuesday report [PDF text; press release] based on visits to 10 prisons across Nigeria over the last six months. According to the report:Approximately 65 percent of the inmates are awaiting trial, [read more]

17:02 EDT

[JURIST] Former Argentinian President Fernando de la Rua [BBC profile] Tuesday denied charges [BBC report] that he attempted to bribe lawmakers with millions of dollars to secure the approval of labor reforms during his presidency from 1999 to December 2001. Judge Daniel Rafecas formally charged de la Rua Monday. Nine [read more]

17:02 EDT

[JURIST] The military government of Myanmar [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive] Tuesday announced that it has enacted a law to govern the May referendum on a new constitution [JURIST reports] for the country. The government said the law sets procedures for voting, announcing results, and imposing penalties for the violation [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] A panel convened by the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) [union website] said Tuesday that US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) [official website] is violating the constitutional rights of US workers by conducting illegal searches and seizures in workplace raids to find illegal immigrants. The UFCW's [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] Belarusian authorities Tuesday granted jailed opposition politician Alexander Kozulin [CFR profile and interview] a three-day release from prison to attend the funeral of his wife, who died on Saturday. Kozulin was sentenced to over five years in prison in July 2006 for leading unauthorized protests over the controversial re-election [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] Agents with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) [official website] urged EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson [official profile] to approve California's request for a waiver that would have allowed it to impose stricter greenhouse gas emissions standards on cars and light trucks, saying that a denial could compromise the [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] Leaders of 34 international bar associations and law societies called for the "immediate closure" of the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay in a letter [PDF text] released Monday. The letter, addressed to US President George W. Bush and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, said:Few governmental operations in democratic [read more]

14:02 EDT

[JURIST] Nigeria's Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal on Tuesday upheld the results of last year's disputed presidential elections [JURIST report], saying that opposition groups failed to present sufficient evidence to support their fraud allegations [JURIST report]. European Union and NGO observers questioned the results of last April's poll, and fraud allegations [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] The European Court of Justice [official website] on Tuesday ruled [text; press release, PDF] that an employee's "dismissal essentially based on the fact that a woman is at an advanced stage of in vitro fertilisation treatment is contrary to the principle of equal treatment for men and women." The [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] Guatemala [JURIST news archive] on Monday announced plans to declassify documents describing human rights abuses committed by its military during the country's 1960-1996 civil war [GlobalSecurity backgrounder]. Guatemalan President Alvaro Colom [personal website; BBC profile] has created a panel to review the documents, which the military has thus far [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Israeli Supreme Court [official website] on Tuesday upheld a controversial plea agreement [JURIST report] for former Israeli President Moshe Katsav [official profile; BBC profile], in which Katsav was permitted to plead guilty to lesser sex charges in exchange for a suspended sentence and the dropping of rape charges [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] A Malaysian court Tuesday rejected a bid to free five prominent members of the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) [Wikipedia backgrounder], ruling that they were lawfully detained under Malaysia's controversial Internal Security Act (ISA) [HRW backgrounder], which permits the government to detain suspects for two years without trial and [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF; press release] in federal court Monday challenging a Tennessee state law that requires convicted felons to pay "all outstanding legal financial obligations" before their voting rights are restored. The lawsuit, brought on behalf of three convicted felons who [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] ruled Tuesday that testimony from workers who suffered job bias but were not parties to a federal age discrimination case "is neither per se admissible nor per se inadmissible" under the Federal Rules of Evidence. The decision came in Sprint/United [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Russia is clamping down "on the freedoms of assembly and expression in the run-up to parliamentary and presidential elections," according to a report [text; press release] released by Amnesty International Tuesday. Amnesty expressed concern that authorities are harassing rights activists and journalists monitoring opposition demonstrations, and said that police [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) [official website] on Tuesday ordered some 70 Internet service providers to restore access to video-sharing website YouTube [corporate website], lifting an order [JURIST report] issued last week blocking access over "blasphemous" posted on the site. The PTA issued a statement [text] Monday explaining the [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Former Khmer Rouge prison chief Kaing Guek Eav [TrialWatch profile], also known as Duch, visited the Choeung Ek "killing field" Tuesday as part of an on-site investigation [press release, PDF] by co-investigating judges of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) [official website; JURIST news archive]. The [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said Monday that the FCC is "ready, willing, and able to step in if necessary" to ensure a proper balance is struck between consumer proponents of "net neutrality" principles and the telecommunication industry's interest in controlling the flow and content of [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Barry Davies has ruled [excerpts] that Section 184.4 of the Canadian Criminal Code [text], which allows law enforcement officers to electronically intercept private communications in "exceptional circumstances" without court authorization, is unconstitutional because it violates "the fundamental freedom to be free from unreasonable search [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] A federal jury in Hartford, Connecticut on Monday found five former insurance executives guilty of charges of conspiracy, securities fraud, false statements to the SEC, and mail fraud in connection with a scheme to falsely inflate the financial health of American International Group (AIG) [corporate website], one of the [read more]

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