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Legal news from Wednesday, April 29, 2009
by Ingrid Burke

A UK judge sentenced two of the three men acquitted of conspiracy charges relating to the July 7, 2005 London Transit Bombings to seven years in prison Wednesday on lesser charges. Mohammed Shakil and Waheed Ali were sentenced for having allegedly planned to attend a terrorist training camp in Pakistan. Shakil, Ali, and …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The five men convicted of plotting to kill US soldiers at Fort Dix have been giving sentences ranging from 33 years to life in prison. Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer was given a life sentence by a federal judge at the US District Court for the District of New Jersey Wednesday, and Serdar Tatar was …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The New Hampshire Senate voted 13-11 Wednesday to approve a bill that would permit same-sex marriage in the state. The New Hampshire House of Representatives approved the bill last month by a vote of 186-179. The bill was amended on the Senate floor to distinguish between civil …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court heard its final oral arguments for the 2008 term Wednesday. In Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Holder, the Court will consider whether the Voting Rights Act (VRA) permits the appellant municipality to "bail out" from the …

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by Ingrid Burke

A judge for the UN Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) ordered the release of four generals who had been held on suspicion of their involvement in the February 2005 suicide bombing that killed former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri and 22 others. The court's pre-trial decision came after prosecutor Daniel …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

US Attorney General Eric Holder said Wednesday that the US has cleared 30 Guantanamo Bay detainees for release and will begin formally requesting that European countries accept them within weeks. During a European tour, Holder told reporters in Germany that no formal requests have been made, but that he has been encouraged …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

A US Army soldier who fled to Canada to avoid serving in the Iraq war pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges of desertion. Spc. Cliff Cornell was sentenced to one year in prison at a court-martial proceeding and was also given a bad conduct discharge. Cornell spent four years in Canada, but was denied asylum by …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

Officials from the US Department of Justice (DOJ) said Tuesday that the DOJ has begun looking into whether a settlement agreement involving Internet search company Google, Inc. over two copyright infringement lawsuits stemming from its book-scanning initiative violates antitrust laws. The two lawsuits were brought against Google …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled 7-2 in Kansas v. Ventris that a defendant's statement made without a knowing and voluntary waiver of his Sixth Amendment right to counsel may be used for impeachment purposes. The defendant made statements to a jailhouse informant that were later …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

Members of the US House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder urging him to appoint a special counsel to investigate allegations of torture against Bush administration officials. The letter, which was signed by committee chairman John Conyers (D-MI), Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled Tuesday that the state secrets privilege does not bar a lawsuit against a company that allegedly provided logistical support for CIA rendition flights. Plaintiffs Binyam Mohamed, Abou Elkassim Britel, Ahmed Agiza, Mohamed Farag Ahmad …

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by Adrienne Lester

A court-martial in Nigeria sentenced 27 UN peacekeeping troops to life imprisonment Tuesday. The soldiers of the 14th Nigerian Battalion were convicted of mutiny under the Armed Forces Act 2004 for staging street demonstrations in protest of a shortfall in their UN allowances for a Nigerian peacekeeping mission. The protesting soldiers alleged finance …

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