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US Legal News Round Up for Saturday, 18 November 2017
US Legal News Round Up for Saturday, 18 November 2017

Here’s the domestic legal news we covered this week:

A US District judge declared a mistrial in New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez’s [official profile] federal corruption trial on Thursday after questioning the 12 jurors.
The US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois [official website] on Thursday denied [order, PDF] the City of Chicago’s motion for reconsideration of an earlier order granting partial injunction of a federal law enforcement grant program.
[JURIST] The US House of Representatives [official website] approved HR 1 [text, PDF], a bill which will overhaul the US tax code, by a vote of 227-205 [NYT report] on Thursday.
An unnamed transgender woman being held in an all-male prison in Massachusetts filed suit [complaint, PDF] Wednesday alleging unfair treatment.

The lawsuit, filed by GLAD Legal Advocates and Defenders [advocacy website] in the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts [official website], names the Massachusetts Department of Correction, Commissioner Thomas A.

An LGBT rights activist filed a federal lawsuit [complaint, pdf] Monday challenging a Tennessee law [text, pdf] that allows counselors to refuse to serve clients based on religious views.

The law, signed in April 2016 [JURIST report] by Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam [official website], allows therapists to refuse to treat patients based on religious objections, when that patient’s “goals, outcomes or behaviors” conflict with the counselor’s “sincerely held principles.”

The lawsuit was filed by activist Bleu Copas, a former Arabic translator and linguist for the US Army, who was honorably yet involuntarily discharged [AP report] in 2006 pursuant to the military’s former Don’t Ask Don’t Tell [JURIST backgrounder] policy.

A judge for the US District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri issued an order [text, PDF] Wednesday placing restrictions on how the St.
Five House Democrats on Wednesday introduced [press release] five new Articles of Impeachment [text, PDF] against President Donald Trump.
A judge for the US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on Wednesday ruled [opinion, PDF] for the city of Philadelphia in a dispute over Attorney General Jeff Sessions withholding federal law enforcement grants in response to the city’s refusal to adhere to his heightened immigration security measures.
Attorneys general from 44 states on Tuesday signed a letter [text, PDF] asking Congress to repeal the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act [text, PDF], which they claim prevents the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) from using effective drug enforcement efforts.
US Attorney General Jeff Sessions testified on Tuesday before the House Judiciary Committee [official websites], denying claims that he had misled Congress during his previous testimonies [JURIST report] regarding ties between the Trump campaign and Russian officials.
Two women filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] against Uber on Tuesday in a San Francisco federal court alleging that they had been sexually assaulted by their Uber drivers.

The women claim that they are not the only ones—that drivers have been using their rail-hailing services as a platform to sexually assault and harass more than 1,000 riders.

An animal rights organization filed a writ of habeas corpus [text, PDF] Monday on behalf of three elephants owned by the Connecticut-based Commerford Zoo [website].

The writ was brought by the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) [advocacy website] for the confinement and mistreatment of the elephants.

The FBI [official website] released [press release] the 2016 Hate Crime Statistics [materials] on Monday revealing 7,321 recorded criminal offenses motivated by bias toward race, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender and gender identity in comparison to 6,885 [press release] of such bias-motivated offenses in the previous year.
The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on Monday allowed [order, PDF] President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban to go partially into effect.
The US Supreme Court [official website] granted certiorari in three cases [order list, PDF] Monday, including two First Amendment cases and a question of whether probable cause defeats a retaliatory-arrest claim.

National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v.

Two women filed suit [complaint, PDF] on Sunday against the US Department of Education [official website] and the Navient Corporation [official website] seeking immediate relief from their student loans due to harm caused by fraudulent claims from their for-profit college.

In a pleading filed with the US District Court for the Southern District of New York [official website], Tina Carr and Yvette Colon claim that they had previously submitted evidence that the Sanford-Brown Institute [corporate website] made fraudulent statements to the Board of Education and Navient, and that they were harmed by these misrepresentations.