Legal news from Tuesday, January 25, 2005
19:01 EDT

[JURIST] In Tuesday's environmental law news, newly appointed US Department of Agriculture [official website] Secretary Mike Johanns[USDA biography] announced [transcript] at a news conference yesterday that his "top priority" will be working with Japan to resume trade in US beef. Trade was halted in December 2003 after a case of [read more]

16:01 EDT

[JURIST] [JURIST] Trials in two high-profile corporate fraud cases are under way, with the trial of former HealthSouth Corp. [official website] CEO Richard Scrushy beginning Tuesday and jury selection in the retrial of former Tyco Inc. [official website; JURIST Hot Topic] officials being completed. Scrushy faces 58 criminal charges in [read more]

16:01 EDT

[JURIST] Trials in two high-profile corporate fraud cases are under way, with the trial of former HealthSouth Corp. [official website] CEO Richard Scrushy beginning Tuesday and jury selection in the retrial of former Tyco Inc. [official website; JURIST Hot Topic] officials being completed. Scrushy faces 58 criminal charges in connection [read more]

15:01 EDT

[JURIST] Jury selection in the trial of former WorldCom CEO Bernard Ebbers was completed Tuesday, and opening statements began this afternoon. Ebbers faces charges of fraud, conspiracy and filing false regulatory reports in the $11 billion fraud scandal that forced WorldCom, now MCI [official website], into bankruptcy. Read the Ebbers [read more]

15:01 EDT

[JURIST] High-profile New York-based monitoring group Human Rights Watch [advocacy website] has broken from its practice of not directly endorsing or opposing Cabinet nomineees to issue a formal statement opposing the nomination of White House counsel Alberto Gonzales [JURIST Newsmaker] for the post of US Attorney General. HRW said in [read more]

14:01 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Tuesday's corporations and securities law news, SEC Chairman William Donaldson [SEC biography] stated in a speech today that the agency is considering changes to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act [text, PDF] to ease burden on foreign companies. Companies in both Europe and the US have complained of the costs to [read more]

14:01 EDT

[JURIST] The first parliamentary elections in Afghanistan [JURIST countries] under the newly established government of Hamid Karzai may be forced to be delayed due to slow progress on a census of the population. Already delayed once from this fall, the elections are scheduled to be held May 20. However, a [read more]

13:01 EDT

[JURIST] The Taiwanese government [Government Information Office website] has urged the US to intensify its opposition to China's proposed anti-secession law [People's Daily report], which is aimed at Taiwan. Joseph Wu, Taiwan's top official for China-Taiwan affairs, admitted late on Monday that there may be no way to stop Beijing [read more]

12:01 EDT

[JURIST] The National Telecommunications Commission [official site] in the Philippines has ordered cable operators to shut down all chat rooms, in response to complaints that some had become sex channels. The NTC commented that some chat room operators were not regulating the use of profane language or explicit messages in [read more]

12:01 EDT

[JURIST] Jerzy Urban, editor-in-chief of the Polish weekly newspaper Nie [official site in Polish], was convicted by a court in Warsaw Tuesday for criticizing Pope John Paul II [BBC profile]. Jerzy was found guilty of insulting a head of state, and was fined $6,500. In his 2002 article, titled "Walking [read more]

11:01 EDT

[JURIST] Iran's highest official, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [official website], told hard-line lawmakers in parliament Tuesday to stop the impeachment of cabinet members appointed by reformist President Mohammad Khatami [official website; BBC News profile]. Ali Khamenei's statement, a rare public political comment, was reported by the Iranian news agency. Conservative lawmakers [read more]

11:01 EDT

[JURIST] The US government has joined the entertainment industry in arguing before the US Supreme Court that file-sharing services such as Kazaa and Grokster, accused of enabling widespread copyright infringement, should be shut down. Acting Solicitor Paul D. Clement filed a brief in support of the entertainment industry late Monday. [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] A group of seven federal judges will meet in Fort Myers, FL, Thursday to consider how to handle mounting lawsuits over the painkiller Vioxx [FDA overview; Merck information website], which was pulled from the market by manufacturer Merck & Co. [official website] after it was linked to increased risk [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] Voter registration by Iraqi nationals in other countries will likely tally 25 percent of the estimated 1.2 million eligible when it closes Tuesday, according to officials organizing the foreign voting program. The Iraq Out-of-Country Voting Program [official website] allows Iraqi nationals living abroad to register and vote [program overview] [read more]

10:01 EDT

[JURIST] Four British men held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST Hot Topic] for three years as enemy combatants were returned to the UK Tuesday, after a deal was reached between the US and UK. The four men, Moazzam Begg, Martin Mubanga, Richard Belmar and Feroz Abbasi [BBC News profile], were the [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] More complaints of abuse of Iraqi detainees by the US military have surfaced, including reports of electric shocks and sodomy, according to newly obtained military documents released by the American Civil Liberties Union [official website; JURIST Hot Topic]. While it is unclear how many of the reports detail new [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] In the latest of a string of attacks on Iraqi officials in Baghdad, an Iraqi judge was killed outside his home Tuesday morning, according to police. Sources said the judge, Qais Hashim Shameri, and his son were killed in a roadside ambush. Violence against Iraqis has increased in the [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] Attorney General John Ashcroft [White House biography] has prepared to step down from his post and said goodbye to members of the Department of Justice, whom he has led for the past four years. A crowd of several hundred gathered Monday to hear Ashcroft speak, and he praised the [read more]

09:01 EDT

[JURIST] In Tuesday's international brief, Southern Sudan officials Monday ratified the proposed peace treaty between the now-autonomous South and the Khartoum government [official website] of the north. The 224-seat National Liberation Council, the legislative branch of the now-ruling Sudan People's Liberation Movement [official website], met over the last two days [read more]

08:01 EDT

[JURIST] Iraqi prisoners are routinely subject to torture by Iraqi authorities, according to a Human Rights Watch [advocacy website] report released Tuesday. Iraqi prisoners told HRW investigators that they had been tortured or mistreated by kicking, slapping and punching; prolonged suspension from the wrists with the hands tied behind the [read more]

08:01 EDT

[JURIST] Twenty-three terror suspects held at Guantanamo Bay tried to kill or harm themselves as part of a "coordinated effort to disrupt camp operations" in August 2003, US Southern Command [official website] officials confirmed Monday. Only two of the incidents were classified as suicide attempts, where the detainee could have [read more]

07:01 EDT

[JURIST] US District Judge K. Michael Moore began hearing a case [Judicial Watch (plaintiff's counsel) press release] Monday against the US government brought by supporters of Cuban refugee Elian Gonzalez [Wikipedia article]. The plaintiffs in the case, who were protesting outside the Miami home of Gonzalez's relatives when FBI agents [read more]

06:01 EDT

[JURIST] Here's a run-down of law-related events, expected developments and live webcasts on JURIST's docket for Tuesday, Jan. 25.On Capitol Hill, the US Senate [official website] will open its session at 9:45 AM ET, and it is scheduled to consider the nomination of Condoleezza Rice for Secretary of State. AP [read more]

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