Legal news from Thursday, February 17, 2005
21:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Iraqi prisoner who died while in US custody at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison [JURIST Hot Topic archive] and whose corpse was shown in photographs that emerged from the abuse scandal died in a position known as "Palestinian hanging" while under CIA interrogation, according to unspecified documents reviewed by [read more]

20:02 EDT

[JURIST] Citing a need for additional protections in light of advances in understanding the human genetic code, the Senate on Thursday unanimously approved the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2005 [PDF text] aimed at preventing employers and health insurers from discriminating against people who have a genetic predisposition to disease. [read more]

20:02 EDT

[JURIST] Interim Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi [CBC profile] Thursday warned the Shiite coalition victorious in last month's election [JURIST report] against banning the Ba'ath Party [Wikipedia entry; 2002 Le Monde backgrounder in English] formerly associated with Saddam Hussein from any involvement in government, saying that would cause even greater [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Thursday's corporations and securities law news, the SEC [official website] has concluded Bear Stearns Cos. [corporate website], the sixth-largest US securities firm, violated federal laws which protect investors when it aided brokers in making illegal after-hours mutual-fund trades. The SEC may announce today that it has reached a [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives [official website] has approved the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 [bill summary], a bill intended to curb class action lawsuits by transfering most large, multi-state class actions to federal courts. The bill now goes to President Bush for expected signature. AP has more.2:20 [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] Six Rwandan citizens have filed a lawsuit in France against French soldiers for their role in the Rwanda genocide [Wikipedia profile]. The Paris army tribunal, the only court which can try French troops for conduct committed abroad, will decide whether to take the case. According to the plaintiffs, French [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz [BBC News profile] Thursday ordered a halt to the razing of homes of Palestinian suicide bombers after a committee report showed that the policy had little deterrent effect and inflamed tensions with Palestinians. The policy was initiated in 2002 in an attempt to deter [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] A British permanent resident being held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST Hot Topic] has been blinded in one eye after an assault by guards at the prison, according to his lawyer. UK human rights attorney Clive Stafford Smith said that Omar Deghayes [Cageprisoners.com profile] lost sight in one eye after [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] In Thursday's international law brief, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour [official profile] presented the findings of the International Commission of Inquiry on the Conflict in Darfur [PDF report] to the UN Security Council on Wednesday, stating that the only 'credible way' to address the atrocities was [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] Israeli Attorney General Menachem Mazuz [official profile] said Thursday that he had decided to close a three-year investigation into a campaign funding scandal involving Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon [official website], citing insufficient evidence. Sharon's son and close advisor Omri Sharon has, however, will be indicted on criminal charges [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] CBS News is reporting that President Bush is naming John Negroponte [official profile], US ambassador to Iraq and former US ambassador to the UN, as the nation's first National Intelligence Director [White House background briefing on position; Congressional Research Service paper [PDF]] under the new intelligence reform legislation signed [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] New York-based monitoring group Human Rights Watch [official website] said Thursday that new documents it recovered in Iraq after the US-led invasion show that Ali Hassan al-Majid, known as "Chemical Ali" [BBC profile] for his alleged role in the gassing of Iraqi Kurds in the late 1980s, was involved [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] US District Court Judge Ted Stewart Wednesday refused to strike down Utah's ban on polygamy, turning back a suit brought by a Utah man who wanted to add another wife to his marriage. Stewart said the state has an interest in protecting monogamous marriage and that the current law [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Amnesty International [official website] said Thursday that the recent imposition of emergency rule in Nepal by King Gyanendra [BBC profile] has taken the country to the "brink of disaster" and that the human rights crisis in the country could turn into a "catastrophe". The Nepalese government has disputed the [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Lea Fastow, wife of former Enron [corporate website; JURIST Hot Topic archive] chief financial officer Andrew Fastow [Wikipedia profile], is asking for an early release from prison. Fastow's attorney has requested that US District Court Judge David Hittner vacate her one-year prison term after pleading guilty to willfully delivering [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that Iraq's electoral commission [official website, English version] has certified the final results of the January 30 election, giving a Shiite Muslim grouping the most seats of any party in the new National Assembly.12:45 PM ET - United Iraqi Alliance leaders have reportedly failed to come [read more]

00:02 EDT

[JURIST] Here's a run-down of law-related events, expected developments and live webcasts on JURIST's docket for Thursday, Feb. 17.On Capitol Hill, the US Senate [official website] meets at 10 AM ET today, when it will consider S. 5 [bill summary], the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2005. Watch a live [read more]

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