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Legal news from Wednesday, April 1, 2009
by Christian Ehret

The Swedish Parliament on Wednesday voted in favor of a gender-neutral marriage law, repealing a previous law on registered partnerships. The legislation would allow same-sex couples already partnered through the existing legislation to either continue their legal partnerships or to apply for marriage status. The law was opposed …

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by Christian Ehret

Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts William Galvin filed a complaint Wednesday against Fairfield Greenwich Group alleging fraud for their involvement in the Bernard Madoff investment scheme. According to the complaint, Fairfield Greenwich acted as a feeder fund, giving their clients access to Madoff's investments. The complaint alleges that …

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by Devin Montgomery

The US Supreme Court on Wednesday heard oral arguments in Polar Tankers v. City of Valdez, where the Court will consider whether a municipal tax that falls exclusively on large vessels in the city’s harbor violates the Tonnage Clause (Art. 1 § 10 cl. 3), …

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by Devin Montgomery

A judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia  on Wednesday granted a habeas corpus petition filed by Yemeni Guantanamo Bay  detainee Yasin Muhammed Basardh, ordering his release from the prison. His detention came under exclusive review of the court after a panel for the US Court of Appeals for the …

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by Jay Carmella

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a motion in federal court Wednesday seeking to set aside the verdict and dismiss the indictment on corruption charges against former senator Ted Stevens (R-AK). Stevens was convicted in October on seven counts of making false statements relating to an alleged corruption scheme …

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by Lucas Tanglen

A lawyer for former Khmer Rouge leader Kaing Guek Eav argued Wednesday that judges in the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) should release Kaing, also known as "Duch," away from his four co-defendants into a separate "safe house. The request came a day after Kaing apologized [JURIST …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court issued three opinions Wednesday. The Court ruled 5-4 in 14 Penn Plaza LLC v. Pyett that an employee may not bring a statutory anti-discrimination suit when the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) prohibits such suits in favor of arbitration. In 2003, the plaintiffs' employer …

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by Matt Glenn

US Attorney General Eric Holder overruled Department of Justice (DOJ) lawyers who believe the District of Columbia Voting Rights Act of 2009 [S.160, PDF; JURIST report] pending in Congress violates the Constitution, the Washington Post reported Wednesday. The proposed bill would give District of Columbia (DC) residents voting rights for the House …

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by Ingrid Burke

The US will seek a seat on the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) this year, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and US Permanent Representative to the UN Susan Rice announced Tuesday. Clinton explained that the decision was based on a desire to increase US involvement in ensuring …

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by Ximena Marinero

The US House of Representatives approved Tuesday a bill that would limit the government's ability to compel reporters to disclose confidential sources by delineating conditions under which it may do so. The Free Flow of Information Act of 2009 [H.R. 985 materials] was approved swiftly through a voice vote, though several opponents noted law enforcement and national …

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by Andrew Gilmore

The Supreme Court of Pakistan suspended its February decision Tuesday barring former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his brother from holding elected office, pending the high court's final review of the decision. Last week, the government of President Asif Ali Zardari petitioned the …

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by Andrew Gilmore

A Russian court heard arguments Tuesday at the start of the trial of former Russian oil executive Mikhail Khodorkovsky and his former business partner Platon Lebedev on embezzlement and money laundering charges. As the trial began, the court refused a request by Khodorkovsky's lawyers to call Russian prime …

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