US Legal News Round Up for Saturday,  5 May 2018
US Legal News Round Up for Saturday, 5 May 2018

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

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] on Thursday unsealed an indictment [charges, PDF] against former Volkswagen (VW) [corporate website] CEO and chairman of the management board Martin Winterkorn on charges of fraud and conspiracy arising from the company’s diesel emission-cheating scandal.

The charges, which were filed on March 14 in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan [official website] by a federal grand jury, include four counts of federal law violations, including conspiracy to defraud VW’s US consumers, wire fraud and violations of the Clean Air Act [materials].

The Department of Defense on Wednesday announced the transfer [text] of Guantanamo detainee Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Haza al Darb to Saudi Arabia.
The National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association (NFPRHA) and Planned Parenthood [adovocacy websites] filed lawsuits against the Trump administration on Wednesday over an alleged shift in policy for family planning services toward a focus on abstinence.
The Iowa legislature [official website] on Wednesday approved a measure [materials] to ban abortions once a heartbeat is detected, or as early as six weeks of gestation.
The Connecticut House of Representatives [official website] on Tuesday approved HB 5542 [text], which bans “the sale or transfer, possession, manufacturing, or use of bumps stocks or other accessories to increase the rate of fire of a firearm.”

Violators of the bill will be guilty of a class D felony.

The Attorneys General from seven states filed a lawsuit [text, PDF] in the US District Court for the Southern District of Texas [official website] Tuesday challenging the legality of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Health care activists filed a complaint [complaint, PDF] Monday against Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services for its failure to expand Medicaid after voters had approved its expansion in November.
The California Supreme Court issued a ruling[opinion, PDF] Monday making it more difficult for employers to classify their employees as independent contractors.

In order for an employee to be classified as an independent contractor, the court ruled that the employer must show three things.

A coalition of 17 states and the District of Columbia, led by California, filed suit [petition, PDF] against the Trump administration Tuesday to defend an Obama-era rule on vehicle emissions standards.

The existing regulations would have required vehicles to meet certain fuel-efficiency standards for model years 2022-2025.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) [official website] reached a determination [press release] last month that the rules should be reconsidered.

A judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] on Friday dismissed [order, PDF] a civil suit brought by Paul Manafort [BBC profile] alleging that the Department of Justice exceeded its authority in appointed the Special Counsel headed by Robert Mueller and that the Special Counsel, even if permitted to exist, exceeded its authority.

The court dismissed Manafort’s suit because his case relies on the Administrative Procedure Act [text] as the law being violated and would only be able to seek remedy if he could not through any other means.

The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit [official website] on Friday reversed an injunction against the Texas voter ID law [SB 5], allowing it to be enforced for the upcoming midterm election.
The US Supreme Court [official website] granted certiorari [order list, PDF] in three cases Monday, including a dispute over a settlement in a Google privacy case and a Missouri death penalty case.

In Frank v.