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Supreme Court takes gun rights, terrorism law cases

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] on Wednesday agreed to hear [order list, PDF] a controversial case dealing with gun rights and another dealing with a terrorism law. In McDonald v. Chicago [docket; cert. petition, PDF], the Court will decide whether the Second Amendment [text] right to keep and bear arms is incorporated as against the states by the Fourteenth Amendment's Privileges or Immunities or Due Process Clauses. The appeal challenges a ruling [opinion, PDF; JURIST report] by the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, which upheld a Chicago handgun ban. Last year, the Supreme Court struck down a similar handgun ban in the District of Columbia in District of Columbia v. Heller [opinion, PDF; JURIST report], but circuit courts have so far refused to extend that ruling to other municipalities' handgun bans.

In Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project [docket; cert. petition, PDF] and Humanitarian Law Project v. Holder [docket; cert. petition, PDF], the Court will consider the constitutionality of a federal law [18 USC § 2339B(a)(1)] that prohibits providing material support to terrorism. The US Department of Justice has used the provision to prosecute about 120 individuals, with approximately half of the prosecutions resulting in convictions. The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit struck down [opinion, PDF] parts of the law and upheld others, leading both parties to appeal.

The Court also granted certiorari in eight other cases.

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