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Legal news from Friday, July 16, 2010
by Dwyer Arce

A UK High Court of Justice on Friday allowed a lawsuit to proceed that seeks to force the UK government to hold a public inquiry into torture allegations made following the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The suit was brought by 102 Iraqi men who claim they were subjected torture, including hooding, electrical shocks and sexual abuse, …

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by Hillary Stemple

New York Governor David Paterson (D) signed a bill Friday prohibiting the retention of personal information of individuals detained New York City police during a "stop and frisk" but ultimately not charged with a crime. The law was approved by the New York Assembly last month and will end the …

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by Hillary Stemple

A UK crown court on Friday ordered five companies to pay £9.5 million in damages relating to the 2005 Buncefield oil storage depot explosion, which has been described as the most costly industrial accident in the UK. Total UK, a subsidiary of French oil company Total, was ordered to pay £3.6 …

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by Dwyer Arce

The Tribunal of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) ruled Friday that the farmers who lost their land under Zimbabwe's land reform program may take their case to the SADC summit meeting next month. The ruling, which also reaffirms a previous ruling finding the land reform program to be racially motivated [JURIST …

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by Hillary Stemple

The lawyer for US geologist Xue Feng announced Friday that Xue has appealed his conviction for selling state secrets, arguing that the information to which he had access did not include protected information. Xue was convicted earlier this month by Beijing's No.1 Intermediate People's Court and sentenced to eight years in prison for …

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by Dwyer Arce

Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Friday criticized the human rights record of Syrian President Bashar al-Asad, claiming he has made virtually no progress on rights despite repeated promises for reform. In a report, "A Wasted Decade", released a day in advance of the 10-year anniversary of al-Asad's rise to power, HRW sharply …

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by Hillary Stemple

The Russian State Duma on Friday voted 354 to 96 to approve legislation that would allow the country's secret police, the Federal Security Service (FSB), to question citizens about their actions related to crimes that have not yet occurred. The KGB, predecessor to the FSB, had the authority to conduct similar …

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by Dwyer Arce

The Kimberley Process (KP) on Thursday approved the limited sale of diamonds from the controversial Marange mines after reaching an agreement with the Zimbabwean government. The agreement, reached in a meeting of the international diamond monitoring body, comes after the KP was unable to reach a consensus on Zimbabwe in its June meeting in Tel …

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by Hillary Stemple

Former head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) and federal judge Jay Bybee denied approving a number of interrogation techniques used by the CIA, according to testimony released Thursday by the US House Judiciary Committee. Bybee was questioned by the committee in May in a closed-door hearing about controversial memos …

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by Dwyer Arce

A federal judge on Thursday sentenced civil rights lawyer Lynne Stewart to 10 years in prison, increasing her original sentence of 28 months. Stewart was convicted by a jury in 2005 on charges of conspiracy, giving material support to terrorists and defrauding the US government for smuggling messages from convicted terrorist Omar …

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by Ann Riley

Goldman, Sachs & Co. on Thursday agreed to a $550 million settlement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to resolve charges that they marketed a subprime mortgage product and made misleading statements and omissions to investors in early 2007. Of the $550 million settlement, $300 million …

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by Ann Riley

The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on Thursday upheld the torture convictions and sentence of Charles McArthur Emmanuel, son of former Liberian President Charles Taylor. Emmanuel was sentenced last year to 97 years in prison after being convicted in 2008 on charges that he was …

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