Legal news from Tuesday, June 17, 2008
16:06 EDT

[JURIST] US immigration prosecutions continued to increase in March 2008, jumping nearly 50 percent from the previous month and nearly 75 percent from the previous year, according to a report [text; press release] released by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) [official websites] at Syracuse University. Federal immigration prosecutions have [read more]

15:06 EDT

[JURIST] A military judge Tuesday dropped charges against a US Marine charged in connection with the November 2005 killings of 24 Iraqi civilians in Haditha [USMC timeline; JURIST news archive]. Battalion commander Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani [JURIST news archive] had faced court-martial [JURIST report] for dereliction of duty and violation [read more]

15:06 EDT

[JURIST] Bolivian officials Monday rejected [press release, archived, in Spanish] a Peruvian proposal to expand intellectual property protections, arguing that the amendment would be illegal and would harm the Bolivian economy. Peru is anxious to strengthen its intellectual property laws because its trade agreements with third countries are contingent on [read more]

14:06 EDT

[JURIST] Detained members of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) [organization website], a rebel group from Sudan's Darfur region [JURIST news archive], will be charged with terrorism and tried this week, Sudanese Justice Minister Abdel Basset Sabdarat told AP Monday. Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported that Sudanese security forces arrested [read more]

14:06 EDT

[JURIST] Mexican President Felipe Calderon [official website; BBC profile] Tuesday signed into law constitutional reforms [senate bill text, in Spanish] which provide for public and oral trials, guarantee the presumption of innocence, and guarantee suspects representation by qualified public defenders. According to a press release [text] from his office, the Calderon [read more]

13:06 EDT

[JURIST] Former Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov [personal website, in Russian; JURIST news archive] lost an appeal in the Moscow Court Tuesday to force Russian authorities to register his People for Democracy and Justice [party website, in Russian] party. Russian officials refused to register the party, alleging that the official [read more]

13:06 EDT

[JURIST] Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] wrote Monday that proposed amendments [PDF text, in Italian] designed to suspend older trials for nonviolent crimes would allow the judiciary to consider more important cases [Senate letter, in Italian] and would give the government time to introduce judicial [read more]

12:06 EDT

[JURIST] Japan carried out its thirteenth execution since Japanese Justice Minister Kunio Hatoyama [official profile] assumed office last August with the hanging of three condemned inmates Tuesday. Tuesday's executions are the latest in an increasing number of executions in the country. In recent years, Japan has experienced a sharp upswing [read more]

12:06 EDT

[JURIST] The Federal Court of Malaysia [official website] ruled Monday that former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim [BBC profile; personal website] can challenge the constitutionality [Constitution, PDF] of his 1998 removal from office by former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad [BBC profile]. Anwar was widely expected to succeed Mahathir [read more]

11:06 EDT

[JURIST] Former DOD General Counsel William "Jim" Haynes [DOD profile] encouraged the use of harsh interrogation tactics on terror detainees, US Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. Carl Levin [official website] (D-MI) said [opening statement] at a Tuesday committee hearing [witness list]. Refering to Haynes and others, Levin asked:So, how [read more]

11:06 EDT

[JURIST] European Union foreign ministers said Monday that member states that have not yet ratified the EU reform treaty [JURIST news archive], formally known as the Treaty of Lisbon [official website; PDF text], should continue their ratification processes despite an Irish referendum which rejected the treaty last week [JURIST report]. [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] The UN Security Council Monday issued a short presidential statement [text] calling on Sudan to work with the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] to "put an end to impunity for the crimes committed in Darfur." Sudan is not a party to the ICC, but must cooperate to fulfill [read more]

10:06 EDT

[JURIST] UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown Tuesday spoke in favor of a controversial anti-terror bill [materials; BBC Q/A] that would allow authorities to detain terror suspects without charge for up to 42 days [JURIST news archive] in a speech [text] he presented to the Institute for Public Policy Research [group [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] The trial of British national Simon Mann [BBC profile; JURIST news archive], accused of participating in a 2004 coup attempt against Equatorial Guinea President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo [BBC profile], began Tuesday in Malabo. Government officials charged [BBC report] Mann, a former Special Air Service officer who allegedly signed [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of California [official website] ruling [opinion, PDF; JURIST report] which overturned a state ban on same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive] took effect Monday, allowing same-sex marriage ceremonies in the state to go ahead. The Court's decision has so far withstood challenges from both in-state conservative groups [read more]

09:06 EDT

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] called on the government of Pakistan [JURIST news archive] to abolish the country's death penalty in a letter [text; HRW press release] sent Tuesday to Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gillani [BBC profile]. In the letter, HRW expresses concern over the number of executions [read more]

08:06 EDT

[JURIST] Russia will not recognize the new Kosovar constitution [text] because it is illegal, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation announced [press release, in Russian] Monday. The Assembly of Kosovo [official website] adopted the constitution in April, and the EU later certified it [JURIST reports] as guaranteeing [read more]

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