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Legal news from Wednesday, February 27, 2008
by Andrew Gilmore

US Attorney General Michael Mukasey made his first visit to the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay Wednesday, where he met with military and Justice Department officials working on the military prosecution of six Guantanamo Bay detainees suspected of involvement in the Sept. 11 attacks, including alleged Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid …

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by Patrick Porter

Germany's Federal Constitutional Court ruled Wednesday that a 2006 North-Rhine Westphalia law authorizing intelligence agents to search personal computers, networks, and Internet communications was unconstitutional. The court ruled that the law violates privacy rights, but said similar methods might be appropriate in limited, compelling circumstances, …

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by Andrew Gilmore

An Afghan journalist working as a cameraman for Canadian television network CTV has been designated as an enemy combatant, a US military spokesperson said Wednesday. US officials alleged that Jawed Ahmad had Taliban phone numbers and videos in his possession when he was detained by coalition forces on …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

Sudanese President Omar El Bashir Wednesday addressed a massive rally in Khartoum protesting the reprinting of a cartoon depiction of the Muslim prophet Muhammad by Jyllands-Poste earlier this month, saying that he would ban all Danish citizens from entering the country and calling on Muslims to boycott Danish products. It was unclear if …

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by Mike Rosen-Molina

The head of the US Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday refused to say whether the White House had pressured the agency to reject California's request for a waiver that would have allowed the state to impose stricter greenhouse gas emissions standards on cars and light trucks. During testimony before the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public …

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by Alexis Unkovic

Iraq's Presidency Council Wednesday rejected a draft provincial elections law that detailed the relationship between Iraq's central and local governments, sending the legislation back to the Iraqi Council of Representatives. The draft law was part of a package of legislation approved by the Council of Representatives earlier this month that also included the …

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by Alexis Unkovic

The US Supreme Court Wednesday heard oral arguments in Exxon Shipping Co. v. Baker 07-219, where the Court considered the punitive damages to be paid by Exxon Mobil for the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill. Several justices indicated they may be willing to reduce …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Turkey's main pro-secular opposition party appealed to the nation's Constitutional Court Wednesday to overturn recently approved amendments to the country's constitution easing a ban on Islamic headscarves in universities. The Republican People's Party says the ban is necessary to protect the separation of religion and state. The Grand …

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by Katerina Ossenova

A Spanish National Court judge Wednesday acquitted 20 suspected terrorists of the most serious charges related to an alleged plot to bomb the National Court in Madrid but convicted them on lesser charges. The court convicted 18 of the 20 suspects of belonging to a terrorist organization and two of conspiring in the …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The Pakistan People's Party (PPP), which along with former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's Pakistan Muslim League (PML(N)) will form Pakistan's new coalition government, vowed Tuesday to make Pakistan's judiciary fully independent. Asif Zardari, the new leader of the PPP and widower of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, promised to …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Mexico's lower house of Congress, the Chamber of Deputies, on Tuesday passed a bill on Tuesday authorizing a variety of judicial reforms. With a vote of 462-6, legislators overwhelmingly approved a bill which provides for public and oral trials, guarantees the presumption …

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by Jeannie Shawl

The US Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that a group of former and current Federal Express employees met the requirements for filing an age discrimination lawsuit against the company under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). The decision came in Federal Express v. Holowecki, where the plaintiffs filed …

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by Brett Murphy

The European Commission (EC) issued a record fine of 899 million euros ($1.3 billion) against Microsoft on Wednesday as penalty for failing to comply with a 2004 landmark ruling requiring the software giant to share technical information with competitors. In discussing the decision, European Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said:Microsoft was …

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by Brett Murphy

The US Department of Defense said Tuesday that three charges have been referred against Yemeni Guantanamo Bay detainee Ali Hamza Ahmad Suliman al Bahlul for his alleged ties to al Qaeda. Al Bahlul is accused of serving as "personal and media director" for Osama bin Laden and is charged with conspiracy and …

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by Brett Murphy

Zacarias Moussaoui had his rights violated when a federal judge mandated secrecy rules that prevented his lawyers from showing him classified evidence, according to a brief asking for Moussaoui's guilty plea to be overturned. In the brief, filed in January but recently unsealed, lawyers for Moussaoui say that:Moussaoui appeals because his plea was involuntary, …

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