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Legal news from Monday, February 22, 2010
by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday in two cases. In Astrue v. Ratliff, the court heard arguments on whether an award of attorneys' fees and expenses under the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) [28 USC § 2412] is payable to …

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by Steve Dotterer

UK Justice Minister Jack Straw announced Monday that the government plans to terminate to the inmate early release program initiated in June 2007 to ease prison overcrowding. In remarks before the House of Commons, Straw indicated that inmates eligible for release under the End of Custody Licence (ECL) scheme on …

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by Hillary Stemple

A judge in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York on Monday accepted a $150 million dollar settlement agreement between the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Bank of America (BOA). In his ruling, Judge Jed Rakoff said he was "reluctantly agreeing" to the settlement, which he …

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by Carrie Schimizzi

Two human rights groups released documents Monday confirming that planes associated with the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) extraordinary rendition program landed in Poland on six occasions in 2003. The Open Society Justice Initiative and the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights released flight records obtained through a freedom of information act request …

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by Megan McKee

Iranian authorities have released 30 political prisoners from Evin prison, opposition website Cyrusnews reported Sunday. The release is being attributed to family members of the imprisoned, who gathered outside the prison for a week demanding their relatives be freed. It is estimated that hundreds of students, activists, and journalists have been arrested as political …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court on Monday ruled in Wilkins v. Gaddy that excessive force claims must be decided based on the nature of the force rather than the extent of the injury. The district court had dismissed a prisoner's excessive force claim after determining that his injuries were "de minimis." The …

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by Patrice Collins

US President Barack Obama on Monday released the administration's health care reform proposal, four days in advance of a bipartisan summit on the issue. The proposal seeks to reconcile the versions of the bills passed last year by the House of Representatives legislation and the Senate. The administration has …

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by Andrew Morgan

The US Supreme Court on Monday granted certiorari in two cases. In County of Los Angeles v. Humphries [docket; cert. petition, PDF], the court will be asked to address whether a plaintiff must show that a constitutional violation by a public entity was the result of a policy, custom, or practice …

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by Ann Riley

Turkish police on Monday detained more than 40 people in connection with an alleged military plot to overthrow the Islamic-rooted government. According to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the arrests occurred during security operations in which 14 senior military officers, including former air force chief Ibrahim Firtina and former navy chief Ozden …

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by Dwyer Arce

An Algerian criminal court on Sunday acquitted former Guantanamo Bay detainee Mustafa Hemlili of charges of counterfeiting and affiliation to a militant group that is active abroad. Hemlili was released from Guantanamo, along with fellow inmate Hederbash Sufian, after a six-year detention period. The court separated the trials of the two defendants, stating that …

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