Legal news from Wednesday, January 15, 2014

[JURIST] The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] released findings [press release] on Tuesday that a wave of human rights violations took place in the Central African Republic (CAR) [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive] last month. According to the UN report, there has been … [read more]

[JURIST] Two advocacy groups on Wednesday condemned [press release] the slow pace of the criminal case against former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier [CBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive]. "A lack of political will and unacceptable court delays are allowing Haiti's former 'president-for-life," Jean-Claude Duvalier to escape justice for human rights violations," … [read more]

[JURIST] Google announced on Wednesday that it filed an appeal of a USD $205,000 fine imposed by the French National Commission on Computing and Liberty (CNIL) [official website] for violating French data protection laws. The CNIL imposed the fine on Google [JURIST report] last week after the company failed to … [read more]

[JURIST] Romania's Constitutional Court [official website] on Wednesday rejected legislation that would make it more difficult to prosecute elected government officials and make libel a criminal offense after criticism from abroad. The draft law would have provided lawmakers and government officials immunity from prosecution [AP report] in corruption cases while … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Wednesday in Ray Haluch Gravel Co. v. Central Pension Fund [SCOTUSblog backgrounder] that, whether a claim for attorney's fees is based upon a statute, a private contract, or both, the pendency of a ruling on an award for fees and … [read more]

[JURIST] The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] on Monday announced [press release] that a legal instrument, which grants children access to international human rights protections, will go into effect in April. The Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child … [read more]

[JURIST] The trial of four individuals accused of aiding the terrorists who perpetrated the September attack [NBC News backgrounder] on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, commenced Wednesday. The Somali Islamist group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility [BBC report] for the attack, in which at least 62 people died and 175 … [read more]

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Tuesday that the state's ban on same-sex marriage violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment [text] to the US Constitution. Article II section 35 of the Oklahoma Constitution [text] … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] heard oral arguments [day call, PDF] in three cases Tuesday, including a case on the General Railroad Right-of-Way Act of 1875 and a case on whether certain employee severance payments are taxable. In Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison [transcript, PDF; JURIST report] … [read more]

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile] on Tuesday criticized Nigeria's new law on the prohibition of same-sex marriage, calling the legislation a direct violation of basic, universal human rights. Earlier this month [press release] Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathon signed the Same Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website] on Tuesday struck down [opinion, PDF] Federal Communications Commission (FCC) [official website] rules that required broadband providers to employ nondiscriminatory practices in the treatment of Internet content. In a 63-page opinion, Judge David Tatel explained how … [read more]

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