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Legal news from Wednesday, March 20, 2013

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile] called Wednesday on Nepal to withdraw [press release; UN News Centre report] a decree creating a truth and reconciliation with the power to grant amnesties for human rights violations that occurred during Nepal's civil war. The conflict resulted in … [read more]

[JURIST] The Maryland Senate [official website] on Tuesday voted 30-16 [legislative history] in favor of a bill that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. Sponsored by Democratic Senator Robert Zirkin and Republican Senator Allan Kittleman [official websites], Senate Bill 297 [text, PDF] seeks to lower the penalty for … [read more]

[JURIST] India's lower house of parliament, the Lok Sabha, passed an anti-rape law [text, PDF] on Wednesday in an attempt to redefine rape and increase the criminal penalties associated with it. The law is expected to be passed by the upper house in the current session. The lower house's changes … [read more]

[JURIST] The Arkansas Senate [official website] on Tuesday voted 22-12 to approve [roll call] a bill [SB2, PDF] that would require voters to show photo identification prior to casting ballots. The bill had previously passed [bill history] the Arkansas House [official website]. Supporters state that the bill will eliminate possible … [read more]

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] on Wednesday urged [press release] Tunisian authorities to repeal a law that criminalizes defamation. The call comes after two Tunisian citizens were charged with defamation for publicly exposing alleged wrongdoing of Tunisian officials. The men face up to two years in prison if … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] heard arguments in Mutual Pharmaceutical Company, Inc. v. Bartlett [transcript, PDF; JURIST report] Tuesday to consider whether design defect claims [Cornell LII backgrounder] can be brought when a generic drug does not present all the warnings the brand-name version of the drug does, … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled 6-3 Tuesday in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. [opinion, PDF; JURIST report] that the "first sale" doctrine [17 USC § 109(a)] applies to imported works. When Supap Kirtsaeng came to study at Cornell University, he realized that the same textbooks … [read more]

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