Legal news from Monday, October 25, 2004
21:10 EDT

"Gross violations of fundamental human rights" are continuing in post-Taliban Afghanistan, according to the report [PDF] of an independent expert appointed by UN Secretary-General Annan. The report, submitted by M. Cherif Bassiouni, details extrajudicial executions to inhuman detention to the frequent abuse or assault of women and girls, and is [read more]

20:10 EDT

Violent crime in the United States is down 25 percent from a decade ago, according to the FBI annual uniform crimes report released Monday. Read the full text of Crime in the United States, 2003 [PDF]. The report, compiled from data submitted by over 17,000 law enforcement agencies representing 93% [read more]

17:10 EDT

In Monday's corporations and securities law news, the NASD has announced that Citigroup has agreed to pay $250,000 to settle allegations of using misleading sales material on hedge funds. Tomorrow the SEC is expected to announce new oversight for hedge funds. Read the NASD press release here. AP has more. [read more]

16:10 EDT

Ohio Republicans, who on Friday had filed 35,000 voter registration challenges in 65 of Ohio's 88 counties (see previous report on JURIST's Paper Chase), today withdrew thousands of those challenges. The withdrawal came after they discovered errors in their filings apparently caused by a computer glitch. The party had already [read more]

15:10 EDT

Antitrust regulators in the Justice Department have approved the proposed acquisition of AT&T Wireless Services Inc. by Cingular Wireless LLC. Cingular's $41 billion acquisition will create the nation's largest wireless telephone company. The FCC is expected to approve the merger as early as Tuesday. Under the agreement with regulators announced [read more]

15:10 EDT

The British government indicated Monday that it will be presenting a new law to Parliament which will entitle juries in child sex abuse and theft cases to know whether defendants have any prior convictions for similar offenses. At present juries are rarely told of previous convictions because of a fear [read more]

13:10 EDT

Florida will not be required to create a paper record backup of results for electronic touch-screen voting machines, a federal judge ruled Monday. US District Judge James I. Cohn dismissed the case brought by US Rep. Robert Wexler (D-Fla), after hearing three days of testimony. In the court's written opinion, [read more]

13:10 EDT

The US Supreme Court has announced that Chief Justice William Rehnquist, 80, was hospitalized over the weekend for treatment of thyroid cancer. Rehnquist underwent a tracheotomy to allow him to breathe. The Court expected Rehnquist to be released from Bethesda Naval Hospital this week, and to preside over the court's [read more]

12:10 EDT

In the wake of President Bush's signing of a tax reform bill last week, the EU announced today that it would suspend sanctions on US imports. In January 2003, the WTO ruled that US subsidies to exporters were illegal. The EU responded by imposing import tariffs on certain US goods. [read more]

12:10 EDT

The US District Court for the District of Columbia is hearing arguments today by defense lawyers for detainees at the Guantanamo Bay naval base challenging the constitutionality of the military commissions before which they will be tried. The New York Times reports on the problems encountered by the military tribunal [read more]

11:10 EDT

South Africa's Cape High Court ruled Monday that the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) will be allowed to televise court proceedings in the case against Mark Thatcher, son of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Thatcher, who has been charged in connection with a failed coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea, [read more]

11:10 EDT

The Georgia Supreme Court unanimously overturned the state's hate crimes law Monday, calling it "unconstitutionally vague." Georgia's statute requires stiffer penalties when a defendant selects a victim because of bias or prejudice. In its opinion, the court wrote: We recognize that persons of ordinary intelligence may understand the dictionary definition [read more]

10:10 EDT

The African Union-hosted peace talks on the humanitarian crisis in Darfur began Monday in the Nigerian capital city of Abuja. This is the second round of talks hosted by the AU; the first round ended in September with no agreement being reached concerning the crisis. The talks were slated to [read more]

10:10 EDT

Following up on a story reported yesterday on JURIST's Paper Chase, several US senators have responded to a report that the CIA secretly moved prisoners out of Iraq in possible violation of international treaties by calling for compliance with the Geneva Conventions. According to a Washington Post report, the Justice [read more]

09:10 EDT

Five Pitcairn Island men, including the island's mayor, were convicted Monday on multiple sexual abuse charges, including rape and indecent assault of girls as young as 12. A sixth man pleaded guilty and a seventh was cleared of the charges. The court rejected arguments that consensual underage sex was part [read more]

09:10 EDT

Bill Cowles, Orange County Supervisor of Elections, has threatened to shut down early voting sites in the Florida county, accusing overzealous campaign supporters and the media of "creating havoc" for voters and poll workers at sites. Similar problems have been reported in Palm Beach County where elections officials are considering [read more]

07:10 EDT

Here's a run-down of law-related events, expected developments and live webcasts on JURIST's docket for Monday, October 25.Early voting begins today in Georgia.... Today is the deadline for voter registration in Utah and Vermont.The US House and Senate are in recess until Tuesday, November 16.At the United Nations, the Security [read more]

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