Legal news from Thursday, January 14, 2010
15:01 EDT

[JURIST] An Iraqi court on Thursday sentenced 11 men to death for the August 19 bombing of the foreign and finance ministries [BBC report] in Baghdad that left close to 100 dead. The 11 men were found guilty [AP report] of financing, planning, and participating in the attacks. Wisam Ali [read more]

14:01 EDT

[JURIST] The UK Parliament Justice Committee [official website] released a reinvestment report [text] on Thursday urging the prison populations in England and Wales to be reduced by a third. The committee found that incarceration is a relatively ineffective way of reducing crime except for serious offenders, and the amount of [read more]

13:01 EDT

[JURIST] 2009 marked the worst year for maritime piracy [JURIST news archive] in six years, according to a report [press release] issued Thursday by the International Chamber of Commerce International Maritime Bureau (IMB) [official website]. The total reported incidents of piracy reached 406, surpassing 400 for the first time since [read more]

13:01 EDT

[JURIST] The legal advisers for the US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen [official profile], have advised him to delay an internal effort to repeal the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" [10 USC § 654 text; JURIST news archive] policy, according to a Thursday Associated Press report [read more]

13:01 EDT

[JURIST] A Dutch court on Wednesday ordered politician Geert Wilders [personal website, in Dutch] to be tried for his video and printed statements against the Quran and Islam, dismissing a motion to drop or reduce the criminal charges. The trial court denied [NRC report] Wilder's counsel's argument that he could [read more]

12:01 EDT

[JURIST] Representatives of Canada's Inuit population on Wednesday announced [press release] a lawsuit against the European Union (EU) [official website] challenging its impending ban on the sale of seal products. The suit, filed in the General Court of the Court of Justice of the EU [official website], seeks to overturn [read more]

11:01 EDT

[JURIST] Rwandan lawmakers may introduce a bill to criminalize denial of the 1994 Rwandan genocide [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive], according to Thursday reports. A senior researcher at the Rwanda National Commission for the Fight Against Genocide (CNLG) [official website] said that they are preparing a bill [New Times report] [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] The Chinese government reiterated its commitment to open Internet [press briefing, in Chinese] on Thursday, saying that international companies are welcome as long as they abide by Chinese law. Responding to a threat [JURIST report] by Google [corporate website] that it may remove its Internet services from the country, [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] Mongolian President Elbegdorj Tsakhia [official profile] announced Thursday that he would suspend [speech text] the death penalty [JURIST news archive] and commute the sentences of all prisoners currently on death row to 30 years in prison. In a lengthy speech to the Mongolian Parliament, Tsakhia called for a permanent [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge on Wednesday ruled [order, PDF] that New York City intentionally discriminated against minority fire department applicants by continuing to use an exam that it knew placed those applicants at a disadvantage. Judge Nicholas Garaufis of the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] Spain's National Court [official website, in Spanish] on Wednesday convicted five people for their involvement in the 2004 Madrid train bombings [BBC backgrounder, JURIST news archive] on charges of supporting terrorist groups that planned attacks. The men were indicted [JURIST report] in November, along with two other suspects, and [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] A UN spokesperson acknowledged Wednesday that Haiti's main prison in the capital Port-au-Prince collapsed [AP report] in Tuesday's earthquake, and many of the inmates have escaped. As US President Barack Obama sent thousands of troops to help with the rescue efforts, General Douglas Frazier [official profile], head of the [read more]

08:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit [official website] on Wednesday reinstated [opinion, PDF] an antitrust lawsuit that accuses major record labels of price-fixing nearly 80 percent of US digital music sales. In overturning a lower court decision to dismiss the case, the appeals court found that [read more]

07:01 EDT

[JURIST] A judge for Nigeria's Federal High Court on Wednesday ordered Vice President Goodluck Jonathan [Online Nigeria profile] to assume executive powers due to the prolonged absence of President Umaru Yar'Adua [BBC profile], who has been in Saudi Arabia receiving treatment for a heart condition since November. The court ruled [read more]

06:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] on Wednesday ruled [opinion, PDF] 5-4 that the trial on the constitutionality of California's Proposition 8 [JURIST news archive] same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive] ban may not be broadcast because the court did not follow proper procedure when enacting a [read more]

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