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Legal news from Tuesday, October 1, 2013
by Cynthia Miley

A Brazilian federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit against Chevron after approving a negotiated settlement, closing a lengthy legal battle over a 2011 oil spill. The leak occurred in November 2011, when a Chevron appraisal well leaked 155,000 gallons of oil, and the following March, when oil resumed leaking from the well and Chevron suspended production …

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by Laura Klein Mullen

Lambda Legal filed a federal lawsuit in West Virginia on Tuesday challenging the state's same-sex marriage ban. The suit was filed on behalf of three local same-sex couples who are seeking the right to marry as well as the child of one of the couples. The lawsuit alleges that the ban on same-sex …

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by Cynthia Miley

The Hungarian Parliament on Monday passed a law that allows municipalities to prohibit sleeping in public places, effectively criminalizing homelessness. The law permits local authorities to declare areas prohibited for homeless people and evict those living in huts or shacks near the city. Punishment for violation can include community service, fines or imprisonment. The government …

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by Laura Klein Mullen

A judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia on Tuesday rejected a request by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to dismiss a suit over subpoenaed documents relating to Operation Fast and Furious. The lawsuit, filed in August 2012 by the House Oversight and Government Reform …

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by Theresa Donovan

The International Criminal Court (ICC) on Monday unsealed an arrest warrant for an Ivory Coast politician charged with four counts of crimes against humanity. Charles Ble Goude is accused of working with former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo to orchestrate a wave of post-election violence between December 2010 and April …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

The US Supreme Court on Tuesday added eight new cases to its docket for the upcoming term. In Harris v. Quinn [docket; cert. petition, PDF] the court will determine whether a state can "compel personal care providers to accept and financially support a private organization as their exclusive representative to petition the state for …

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by Theresa Donovan

The administration of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on Monday sent a letter to the state's supreme court, appealing a lower court ruling which held that same-sex couples must be allowed to marry in the state. Despite Judge Mary Jacobson's finding that the state's current process of civil unions deprives same-sex couples of federal benefits …

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by Peter Snyder

The Spanish government must do more to provide information on the whereabouts of individuals who disappeared during the Spanish Civil War and the Francisco Franco regime, experts from the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances demanded Monday. The working group compiled preliminary observations and recommendations during a visit …

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by Peter Snyder

The International Crimes Tribunal Bangladesh (ICTB) on Monday sentenced Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury, a member of parliament for the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), to death for war crimes committed during the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War. Chowdhury is the first member of the BNP to stand trial for war crimes under the …

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by Elizabeth LaForgia

US District Judge Myron Thompson approved a settlement Monday that will end segregation of HIV-positive inmates in Alabama prisons. The settlement came as a result of a 2012 decision by Thompson, who found that separating HIV-positive inmates from other inmates was discriminatory and lacked a medical basis. In the settlement, the Alabama Department …

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by Elizabeth LaForgia

The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled Monday that a state law criminalizing speech that "advises" and "encourages" another's suicide is unconstitutional. In the suit filed against the national right-to-die group Final Exit Network after they were charged with the 2007 suicide of a Minnesota woman, the state argued that speech advising or encouraging …

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