Legal news from Tuesday, April 19, 2011

[JURIST] UN Special Rapporteur on the right to freedom of opinion and expression Frank LaRue on Tuesday called on Algeria [press release] to "guarantee the right to freedom of opinion and expression" including decriminalizing defamation. LaRue noted that, despite significant progress since the 1990s, which saw more than100 journalists killed, … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] 6-2 Tuesday in Virginia Officer for Protection and Advocacy v. Stewart [Cornell LII backgrounder] that a state agency can sue state officials in federal court to remedy a violation of federal law. The Virginia Office for Protection and Advocacy (VOPA) … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website, JURIST news archive] heard oral arguments [day call, PDF; merit briefs] Tuesday in American Electric Power Co. v. Connecticut [oral arguments transcript, PDF; JURIST report] regarding whether electric utilities contributed to global warming [JURIST news archive]. The court is being asked to decide … [read more]

[JURIST] The Syrian legislature on Tuesday passed a bill that, if signed by President Bashar al-Assad [Al Jazeera profile], will end the country's 48-year-old state of emergency. Prime Minister Dr. Adel Safar chaired the legislative session, which voted to end the emergency law [SANA report] that has been in place … [read more]

[JURIST] A Tunisian court on Tuesday dropped charges against a police officer who incited protests in several Arab countries when she allegedly slapped a local fruit vendor. Police woman Fedia Hamdi was accused of slapping Mohamed Bouazizi [TAP report] in December in a dispute during which Bouazizi's cart was confiscated … [read more]

[JURIST] The Republican-led US House of Representatives [official website] filed a motion [text, PDF] Monday with the US District Court for the Southern District of New York [official website] seeking to intervene in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) [text; JURIST news archive]. … [read more]

[JURIST] Apple [corporate website] filed suit Friday claiming that the Samsung [corporate website] "Galaxy" line of products copies its iPhone and iPad technology. The complaint, filed in the US District Court for the Northern District of California [official website], includes 10 patent infringement charges, two trademark violations, two trade dress … [read more]

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