Legal news from Tuesday, November 9, 2004
21:11 EDT

[JURIST] The US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals refused on Tuesday to reconsider a decision it made last year that the music group Beastie Boys could use short samples of others' music in its own songs. The practice of "sampling" has become widespread in the music industry. The 9th Circuit [read more]

20:11 EDT

[JURIST] In Tuesday's environmental law news, San Francisco CA officials announced a plan that would close the Hunters Point power plant (owned by Pacific Gas and Electric) by 2006 and the Potrero power plant (owned by Mirant Co.) by 2007. The plan, developed by the city and the California Independent [read more]

20:11 EDT

[JURIST] The UK High Court Tuesday referred a steelworkers' case against the government over lost pensions to the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg. The former workers at Allied Steel and Wire claim the government should have protected their pensions when the company went bankrupt in 2002. The union, Community, [read more]

17:11 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that Attorney General John Ashcroft has resigned from the Bush cabinet, along with Commerce Secretary Don Evans. Ashcroft's resignation had been expected by some observers, albeit perhaps not until January. Possible successors include Senator Orrin Hatch, currently chairman of the Senate Juidiciary Committee, and Bill Pryor, [read more]

16:11 EDT

[JURIST] On the last day it could file an appeal, the US Department of Justice has asked the US Supreme Court to block the Oregon Death With Dignity Act which allows doctors to help terminally ill patients die more quickly. The appeal has been expected since May, when the US [read more]

16:11 EDT

[JURIST] Belgium's highest court - Hof van Cassatie in Dutch/Flemish, Cour de cassation in French (official website here) - ruled Tuesday that the Flemish far-right Vlaams Blok party is racist. The ruling, which is final and cannot be appealed, in effect shuts down the party as the Blok will lose [read more]

15:11 EDT

[JURIST] The US Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has thrown out a deportation order against a Syrian family which claimed its father would be tortured if returned to Syria. The family, which has lived in the Seattle area for over 10 years, overstayed their visa and sought [read more]

15:11 EDT

[JURIST] Gay-rights supporters in Georgia have filed a lawsuit over the ban on same-sex marriage voted into the Georgia constitution in last Tuesday's election. The constitutional amendment at issue, which only asked if voters wanted to define marriage as between a man and a woman, not whether to ban civil [read more]

15:11 EDT

[JURIST] The Sudanese government and Darfur rebels have reached an agreement in principle which will stop hostilities and will guarantee aid groups' access to 1.6 million civilians uprooted by war in the troubled western Sudan region of Darfur. The government has agreed to renounce hostile military flights over Darfur which [read more]

15:11 EDT

[JURIST] New York Judge Faviola Soto has ruled that New York City must enforce a law that requires companies which do business with the city to give the same benefits to same-sex couples that they give to spouses. Mayor Michael Bloomberg had vetoed the Equal Benefits Law saying it would [read more]

13:11 EDT

[JURIST] Iranian judiciary officials announced Tuesday that a group of pro-reform journalists will stand trial next week on charges of spreading propaganda against the Islamic government. The journalists, who wrote for Internet-based news organizations or maintained web logs, have all been arrested since September. Human rights groups, as well as [read more]

13:11 EDT

[JURIST] In Tuesday's corporations and securities law news, the SEC is considering bringing civil charges against two former executives of Lucent Technologies Inc. and a third unidentified person over violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by allegedly participating in a bribery scheme involving Saudi Arabian officials. AP has more.In [read more]

13:11 EDT

[JURIST] A retired military officer appeared in a Ghana court Tuesday to face charges of plotting to destablize the government ahead of a presidential election. Nicholas Owuba was formally charged with illegally purchasing military supplies and weapons possession. Owuba was one of seven arrested over the weekend as part of [read more]

12:11 EDT

[JURIST] The International Committee of the Red Cross Tuesday urged parties engaged in fighting in the Iraqi city of Fallujah to avoid killing or harming civilians contrary to international humanitarian law. The ICRC call came as US Central Command denied media reports that a government clinic in the city had [read more]

12:11 EDT

[JURIST] The Federal Communications Commission Tuesday exempted emerging Internet-based phone services from regulation by state authorities, a decision expected to increase the services' growth. Phone regulation has traditionally been left to the states, but the FCC ruled that Voice over Internet Protocol services, such as Vonage, are not linked to [read more]

12:11 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers for accused terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui have sought to further delay the start of his trial while they pursue an appeal of pretrial issues to the US Supreme Court. Moussaoui's attorneys argued for the delay in a Monday filing responding to an effort by the US government to set [read more]

11:11 EDT

[JURIST] An Indonesian court Tuesday threw out a $107 million lawsuit brought by Islamic cleric Abu Bakar Bashir (profile from BBC News) against Time magazine. Bashir filed suit against the magazine seeking for linking him to terrorism in a 2002 article on an alleged plot to bomb US embassies in [read more]

10:11 EDT

[JURIST] In a second opinion handed down Tuesday morning, the US Supreme Court held that federal law governs maritime contracts when the dispute is not inherently local, that a broadly written clause limiting liability in a bill of lading can be extended to cover multiple forms of transportation, and that [read more]

10:11 EDT

[JURIST] In a decision handed down Tuesday morning, the US Supreme Court has ruled that a conviction for drunk driving that results in serious bodily injury is not a "crime of violence" that constitutes an "aggravated felony" under the Immigration and Nationality Act and therefore can't lead to the deportation [read more]

10:11 EDT

[JURIST] An Irish judge ruled Tuesday that a lesbian couple who were married in Canada last year can seek state recognition of their marriage. The couple is seeking to force Ireland's tax-collection agency to allow them to file as a married couple. High Court Justice Liam McKechnie ruled that the [read more]

09:11 EDT

[JURIST] A UN-appointed commission of inquiry has begun its work to determine whether acts of genocide have occurred in Sudan's Darfur region. The five-member commission was established by Secretary-General Kofi Annan under Security Council Resolution 1564 to "investigate reports of violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law in [read more]

09:11 EDT

[JURIST] Conservative Republicans are calling for Republicans on the US Senate Judiciary Committee to block Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter's bid to become chairman of the committee. Specter sparked controversy last week by warning President Bush against appointing Supreme Court justices who would seek to overturn abortion rights (see this report [read more]

08:11 EDT

[JURIST] The US Justice Department has responded to yesterday's district court ruling that the Guantanamo military commission proceedings are unlawful (reported here on JURIST's Paper Chase) by saying it will seek an emergency stay of the ruling and will immediately appeal. US District Judge James Robertson ruled Monday that the [read more]

08:11 EDT

[JURIST] Steven Kay and Gillian Higgins, the two lawyers appointed to defend former Yugoslavian president Slobodan Milosevic in his war crimes trial before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, asked the court Tuesday to be dismissed as Milosevic's standby defense counsel. As previously reported on JURIST's Paper Chase, [read more]

07:11 EDT

[JURIST] SEC Commissioners will vote Tuesday on whether to publish for public comment several proposed rules on the governance, ownership structure and required disclosures for national securities exchanges and registered securities associations that are self-regulating. The proposed rules were formulated following allegations of widespread violations by trading firms at the [read more]

07:11 EDT

[JURIST] Here's a run-down of law-related events, expected developments and live webcasts on JURIST's docket for Tuesday, Nov. 9.The US Supreme Court will hear 10 AM ET oral arguments in the consolidated case of Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma v. Thompson and Thompson v. Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma (case summary from [read more]

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