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Legal news from Friday, August 3, 2012
by Max Slater

The American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation's Capitol (ACLU) filed suit in federal court on Thursday arguing that a provision of a new law designed to stop insider trading by members of Congress and federal employees violates these employees' privacy and freedom of speech rights. The lawsuit, filed in the US District …

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by Dan Taglioli

Former president of Mongolia Nambar Enkhbayar was convicted Wednesday on graft charges and sentenced to four years in prison. The Sukhbaatar district court also ordered the confiscation of more than 30 million tugriks (USD $22,206) of Enkhbayar's property. Enkhbayar, who maintains his prosecution is politically-motivated, was arrested in April and charged with …

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by Sung Un Kim

The Pre-Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Thursday postponed the confirmation of charges hearing in the case against former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo until the issue of his fitness to stand trial is resolved. Three medical evaluations of Gbagbo fitness were submitted on …

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by Dan Taglioli

Two independent UN human rights experts noted Roma Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday by calling on the international community to find solutions to the persistent exclusion of Roma denizens from larger society in all countries. "Pharrajimos" is observed each August 2 in remembrance of the approximately 3,000 Roma and Sinti who were killed on …

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by Sung Un Kim

The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on Friday expressed concern about draft legislation that would criminalize homosexual behavior in Liberia. The bill provides for fines and imprisonment for up to five years for "seduc, encourag, promot another person of the same gender to engage into …

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by Max Slater

The UN General Assembly passed a resolution on Friday criticizing the Syrian government for increasing its use of heavy weapons and calling on both sides of the conflict to stop fighting. The non-binding resolution, which passed by a vote of 133-12, also chastised the UN Security Council for failing to take decisive action …

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by Sung Un Kim

The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on Friday urged Sudan to initiate an investigation into allegations of excessive force by government security forces against protesters in Darfur Tuesday resulting in eight deaths and more than 50 injuries. The OHCHR urged the government to "promptly launch …

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by Max Slater

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) filed an amicus brief on Thursday with the California Supreme Court arguing that undocumented immigrants should not be able to practice law in the US even if they passed a state bar exam. California's high court sought the DOJ's guidance in the pending case of an undocumented immigrant, …

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by Sung Un Kim

A cousin of former Bosnian Serb Army commander Ratko Mladic has admitted that he hid the accused war criminal in his house for five years, according to a local news agency. Branislav Mladic stated that he nursed his cousin for five years until he was arrested in 2011. Serbian …

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by Dan Taglioli

The Colombia Ministry of Justice on Friday announced a new initiative to solve the problem of overcrowding in the nation's prisons. INPEC, Colombia's prison institute, has begun the transfer of 800 inmates from "La Modelo" prisons in Bogota and Cali to less crowded detention centers elsewhere in the country. Such …

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by Max Slater

A federal court in Brazil on Wednesday ordered Chevron and drilling company Transocean to suspend all oil drilling in Brazil within 30 days in the wake of two oil spills off the coast of Rio de Janeiro. A judge for Brazil's Regional Federal Court of the Second Region ruled that each …

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by Sung Un Kim

An Iraqi court on Thursday rejected a US extradition request for Hezbollah commander Ali Mussa Daqduq. The court also ruled that Daqduq should be released immediately from his house arrest. In May an Iraqi court had cleared all charges against Daqduq. The court stated that Iraq could not extradite someone whose charges …

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by Dan Taglioli

Slovakian authorities on Thursday announced that they have filed new charges against a 97-year-old Hungarian man arrested in Budapest last month on allegations of abusing and helping deport thousands of Jews during the Holocaust. The charges concern facilitating the deportation of Jews to Germany, and the case in Slovakia means that extradition proceedings may now be launched in Hungary. …

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by Sung Un Kim

The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Friday nullified the Contempt of Court Bill 2012 which was passed to shield the country's new prime minister from contempt charges. The bill was passed by the upper and lower houses of the national parliament and signed by President Asif Ali Zardari last month. The court held …

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by Max Slater

A trial court in Minnesota ruled on Wednesday that the state's Defense of Marriage Act does not prohibit partners in same-sex couples from inheriting each other's assets. A judge for the Hennepin County District Court declared that while the Defense of Marriage Act bars same-sex couples from marrying, it does not prevent …

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by Dan Taglioli

The Egyptian government announced Thursday that it has requested the release of the last of its citizens currently being held at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. Egyptian Tarek al-Sawah, 54, has been held at Guantanamo for 11 years without charges or trial. Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel requested al-Sawah's release in a letter to US …

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by Max Slater

Amnesty International (AI) urged the Cuban government on Thursday to stop harassing and detaining political and human rights activists. AI's call for an end to harassment by Cuban authorities came in the wake of Cuba releasing prominent political activist Jose Daniel Ferrer Garcia on Wednesday after detaining him for 36 hours. Ferrer Garcia is the …

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by Matthew Pomy

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn on Tuesday proposed legislation to ban assault weapons in the state. Quinn exercised his amendatory veto power under Article IV, Section IX of the Illinois Constitution on a bill regulating ammunition to add language banning AK-47's, AR-15's and TEC-9's. Like most gun control legislation, the amendments have …

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by Matthew Pomy

The UN Security Council on Thursday reiterated their condemnation of a group of renegade soldiers attempting to destabilize the Eastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) known as the 23 March Movement (M23). In addition, the Security Council called on all foreign entities to cease aiding the M23 and begin working with …

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