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Legal news from Friday, February 18, 2011
by John Paul Putney

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday called for an end to violence against protesters in Bahrain, referencing recent attempts to quell protests sweeping across the Middle East and North Africa. Ban said that he is "disturbed by all these violent means of trying to disperse demonstrators, the freedom of expression, freedom of …

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by Drew Singer

Three Turkish journalists allegedly involved with aiding the Ergenekon coup plot were jailed Friday amid foreign concerns for the treatment of journalists within the country. Members of the Ergenekon plot allegedly planned to assassinate prominent members of Turkey's Christian and Jewish minority groups, blame Islamic terrorists for the deaths and use this to delegitimize …

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by LaToya Sawyer

A judge for the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York on Thursday sentenced Russell Defreitas, a Guyanese airport cargo handler, to life in prison for conspiring to commit terrorist attacks on John F International Kennedy Airport (JFK). Defreitas and co-conspirator Abdul Kadir, originally arrested in 2007, …

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by Brian Jackson

A Chinese appeals court on Friday upheld the conviction of US geologist Xue Feng, sentenced to eight years in prison for committing industrial espionage. The court's decision was immediately met with expressions of disappointment by US Ambassador to China John Huntsman, who said that the US would ask China to consider an "immediate …

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by Andrea Bottorff

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay on Thursday urged Russian officials to reform institutions to protect the rule of law in Russia. Pillay claimed that the Russian people do not trust government institutions, in part because of the ongoing harassment of journalists and human rights activists. She said that the "rule of law, …

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by Brian Jackson

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) on Thursday asked federal judge Roger Vinson to clarify his ruling to require states to enact the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act during the pendency of the government's appeal. In the motion, the government focused on the substantial uncertainty that would be faced by …

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by Andrea Bottorff

US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said at a congressional hearing Thursday that Guantanamo Bay is unlikely to be closed because of security concerns. Responding to a question from the Senate Armed Forces Committee, Gates said that the odds of closing the detention facility are "very, very low," particularly because of congressional …

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by Carrie Schimizzi

A judge for the US District Court for the District of South Carolina on Thursday dismissed a lawsuit filed by convicted terrorist Jose Padilla, ruling that he has no right to sue for constitutional violations. Padilla alleged he was isolated and tortured while being detained on a Navy military brig in Charleston, …

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by Carrie Schimizzi

former financier Allen Stanford, accused of defrauding investors out of $7 billion in a Ponzi scheme, filed a lawsuit Wednesday accusing federal agents of violating his constitutional rights. The suit, filed in the US District Court for the Southern District of Texas, names 12 defendants, including members of …

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by Daniel Makosky

The US House of Representatives on Thursday voted 279-143 to extend three surveillance provisions of the USA Patriot Act through May 27. The measures were set to expire on February 28. The provisions extended include roving wiretaps, "lone wolf" terrorism suspects and the government's ability to seize "any tangible items" …

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