Legal news from Friday, July 27, 2012

[JURIST] Google [corporate website; JURIST news archive] called Friday for the dismissal of a class action lawsuit accusing the company of infringing upon authors' copyrighted works when it scanned books for its digital library. In a filing with the US District Court for the Southern District of New York [official … [read more]

[JURIST] Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] announced Friday that four men responsible for killing seven UN officials during an armed conflict near the border town of Tai were arrested in Liberia [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive]. The seven UN peacekeepers, all from Niger, were killed … [read more]

[JURIST] The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) on Wednesday ruled [order, PDF, in Spanish] that Ecuador violated the rights of the Sarayaku Indigenous community in the Ecuadorian Amazon when the state allowed the Argentine oil company CGC to encroach on Sarayaku traditional lands in the early 2000s without the … [read more]

[JURIST] Alaska Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell [official website] issued a regulation on Thursday that allows transgender individuals to change the sex indicator on their driver's licenses without undergoing surgery. Last year, the American Civil Liberties Union of Alaska (ACLU) [advocacy website] filed a lawsuit against Alaska on behalf of a … [read more]

[JURIST] UN Special Rapporteur on arbitrary executions Christof Heyns [official website] on Friday expressed concern [press release] about an announcement that the Iraqi Court of Cassation has upheld the death sentences of 196 individuals in the Anbar province of Iraq. Heyns said he was concerned about the growing number of … [read more]

[JURIST] Russia's Federal Arbitration Court in Tyumen on Friday ordered British Petroleum (BP) to pay 100 billion rubles (US$3.1 billion) in damages to TNK-BP, BP's 50-50 joint venture with Alfa Access Renova (AAR) [corporate websites], a consortium representing four Russian billionaire tycoons. Minority shareholders of TNK-BP brought a lawsuit against … [read more]

[JURIST] The UN Secretary-General's Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict Radhika Coomaraswamy [official profile] on Friday renewed her call to transfer Canadian Guantanamo Bay [JURIST backgrounder] detainee and convict Omar Khadr [DOD materials; JURIST news archive] to his home country of Canada. Coomaraswamy said it was important to focus … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website] on Friday upheld [opinion, PDF] a lower court decision to impose restrictions on cigarette makers for violating federal racketeering laws. The appellate court said that the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] … [read more]

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official website] on Friday expressed concern [press release] about the continued violence and human rights violations prevalent in Myanmar's Rakhine state since clashes began between its Buddhist and minority Rohingya [BBC backgrounder] Muslim communities in May. Pillay said that independent reports … [read more]

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile] on Friday insisted that the Syrian government take steps to protect civilians [statement] during armed conflicts. Pillay noted that recent violence in the country has often led to the death of civilians who were not notified that the conflict … [read more]

[JURIST] A Chinese intermediate court on Friday dismissed fraud charges against Ni Yulan, a human rights lawyer with disabilities, resulting in a two-month reduction to her two-year and eight-month sentence while upholding convictions against the lawyer for causing a disturbance. Ni had assisted victims of government land seizures [Guardian report], … [read more]

[JURIST] The government of Sri Lanka said Thursday that it may take up to five years to prosecute people accused of war crimes during the 26-year civil war it fought with the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) [CFR backgrounder; faction website]. The government released a timetable [text] on … [read more]

[JURIST] A German court on Friday granted Microsoft Corp. an injunction against Google subsidiary Motorola Mobility [corporate websites] in a patent infringement case involving a technology [EP0618540] related to common names for long and short file allocation tables. With the injunction the court in Mannheim also held that Motorola should … [read more]

[JURIST] A government watchdog group Judicial Watch [advocacy website] announced [press release] on Thursday that they had filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] seeking information about the funeral arrangements made for al Qaeda [JURIST news archive] leader Osama Bin Laden [WP obituary; JURIST news archive]. The US Navy reported last year … [read more]

[JURIST] The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] 4-3 on Thursday that Pennsylvania's new oil and gas law [Act 13 materials] violated the state's constitution by placing zoning rights regarding hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" [JURIST news archive] solely in the hands of state authorities. Fracking is the process … [read more]

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Israel [official website, in Hebrew] on Friday granted a government request to delay the removal of the Migron outpost [Peace Now backgrounder] in the West Bank [JURIST news archive]. The court had ordered [JURIST report], in a watershed decision in August 2011, that Migron be … [read more]

[JURIST] A spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] on Thursday expressed concern [statement; press release] about the lack of progress being made at a UN conference to negotiate an international Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). With only two days remaining in the UN Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty … [read more]

[JURIST] Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange [official profile] filed suit [complaint, PDF] in federal court on Thursday seeking approval of a redistricting plan passed by the Alabama state legislature in May. The lawsuit, filed in the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website], asks the court to … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Thursday reinstated [opinion, PDF] a challenge brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [advocacy website] over the no-fly list maintained by the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) [official website]. The appeals court, without deciding on the merits … [read more]

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