Legal news from Thursday, March 10, 2005
20:03 EDT

[JURIST] Canada honored four slain RCMP officers Thursday afternoon in a nationally-televised memorial service [RCMP memorial website] attended by Prime Minister Paul Martin, Governor-General Adrienne Clarkson representing the Queen, and 10,000 police officers from Canada, the United States and around the world. Waves of Mounties in their red serge ceremonial [read more]

18:03 EDT

[JURIST] The US Senate has passed a credit card-company backed bankruptcy bill that will make it harder for many Americans to clear their debts. The vote on passage of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 [THOMAS bill summary and text] was 74-25 [Senate roll call]. [read more]

16:03 EDT

[JURIST] Speaking Thursday at a global anti-terrorism summit in Madrid [summit website] slated to coincide with the one-year anniversary of the Madrid train bombings, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called for terrorism to be outlawed in all its forms, but insisted that the fight against terror must be consistent with [read more]

16:03 EDT

[JURIST] Chuck McGee, the former executive director of the New Hampshire Republican Party [political party website], was sentenced to seven months in prison and $2,000 in fines on Thursday after pleading guilty to jamming Democratic phone lines during the 2002 general election. McGee had pleaded guilty [JURIST report] to conspiring [read more]

15:03 EDT

[JURIST] Iraqi Human Rights Minister Bakhtiar Amin defended his country’s human rights record since the formal dissolution of US occupation last year at a press conference Thursday, reminding critics that Iraq’s treatment of human rights issues is far better than it had been under Saddam Hussein. Iraq has been in [read more]

15:03 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that a judge has rejected a bid by the Florida's Department of Children and Families to intervene in the Terri Schiavo right-to-die case. The Department had sought an additional 60-day stay [JURIST report] of the removal of Schiavo's feeding tube so it could investigate allegations of [read more]

14:03 EDT

[JURIST] A man who committed suicide during a traffic stop Wednesday evening in Wisconsin claimed in a suicide note found by police that he killed the husband and mother [JURIST report] of US District Judge Joan Humphrey Lefkow [official profile] last week. The man, Bart Ross, had apparently sent a [read more]

14:03 EDT

[JURIST] Just ten days after his resignation [JURIST report] from the post, Omar Karami has been reappointed as prime minister by Lebanese President Emile Lahoud, a surprising move that has angered opposition leaders. Syrian-backed Karami announced that he wants to form a government of national unity, but opposition politicians announced [read more]

12:03 EDT

[JURIST] US District Judge Jack B. Weinstien Thursday dismissed a lawsuit filed on behalf of millions of Vietnamese that claim American chemical companies committed war crimes by supplying the military with Agent Orange, a chemical agent containing dioxin, a highly toxic substance that causes cancer and birth defects. In a [read more]

11:03 EDT

[JURIST] The UN Security Council [official website] has urged government officials in Haiti [JURIST Country news archive] to curb human rights violations and expedite the releases of political leaders currently held in prison. In a statement [official text] Wednesday the Council urged the interim Haitian government to calm violence in [read more]

11:03 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers for the survivors of the 1921 Tulsa race riot [backgrounder] petitioned the Supreme Court Wednesday to hear their case seeking reparations. The case was thrown out of a federal district on the grounds that the two-year statute of limitations had run on the survivors’ claim. Harvard law professor [read more]

11:03 EDT

[JURIST] As anticipated [JURIST report], Hong Kong chief executive Tung Chee Hwa submitted his resignation Thursday, citing health reasons for leaving his post two years before the expiry of his second 5-year term. He denied claims that the Chinese government had pressured him into leaving office, although Chinese officials had [read more]

11:03 EDT

{JURIST] Nepal's foreign minister said Thursday that King Gyanendra would soon lift the civil liberties restrictions imposed last month after he declared a state of emergency [JURIST report], dismissed the government, and seized power himself in a bid to stabilize a country plagued by an ongoing Maoist rebellion. Speaking in [read more]

11:03 EDT

[JURIST] Confirming earlier US military statements [JURIST report], Iraqi human rights minister Bakhtiar Amin told reporters Thursday that the US will hand over control of Abu Ghraib [JURIST Hot Topic news archive], and three other prisons west of Baghdad to Iraq's interim government. Amin calls the agreement to turn over [read more]

10:03 EDT

[JURIST] The Clear Skies Act of 2005 [THOMAS bill summary], S. 131, stalled in the US Senate Wednesday after a split 9-9 vote in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee [official website]. Senate rules do not allow a bill to advance to the Senate floor on a split committee [read more]

10:03 EDT

[JURIST] A Chinese Foreign Ministry [official website, English version] spokesman Thursday rejected a US call for China to "reconsider" its proposed anti-secession law allowing for "non-peaceful" reunification of the country as a last resort, labeling Washington's comments "irresponsible" and warning the US not to help any efforts by Taiwan to [read more]

10:03 EDT

[JURIST] A lawyer representing a German-born Turk held at the US terror suspect detention camp at Guanatanamo Bay claimed Wednesday that his client had been subjected to torture, physical abuse and sexual humilation by interrogators. Murat Kurnaz [Amnesty International case sheet], 22, is said to have been captured in Pakistan [read more]

10:03 EDT

[JURIST] A lawsuit filed last week [JURIST report] in New York against the Thai government, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and a French a hotel chain in connection with the December 26 tsunami in Southeast Asia has prompted the Thai government to withhold findings of a study into [read more]

10:03 EDT

[JURIST] The Russian oil company Yukos [corporate website] has taken its recently-dismissed bankruptcy case to US District Court in a bid to hold off creditors long enough for it to appeal. US District Judge Nancy Atlas said Wednesday she would rule on Yukos' case by March 18. The original bankruptcy [read more]

09:03 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia at The Hague has charged ex-Kosovo prime minister Ramush Haradinaj, formerly a senior commander in the Kosovo Liberation Army, with 37 counts of war crimes.9:52 AM ET - The ICTY has posted the full text of the [read more]

09:03 EDT

[JURIST] An investigation of US military interrogation policies and techniques presented to Congress Thursday by former US Navy Inspector-General Vice Adm. Albert T. Church [official profile] has concluded that senior civilian and military leaders did not encourage abuse of prisoners and applied no pressure to go beyond the limits pf [read more]

08:03 EDT

[JURIST] The US State Department announced Wednesday that the United States has withdrawn from a protocol giving the International Court of Justice [official website] at the Hague authority to decide disputes between states arising from interpretation of the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations [UN text], recognizing the right of [read more]

08:03 EDT

[JURIST] The government of British Prime Minister Tony Blair is bracing for a legislative showdown in the House of Lords Thursday as the controversial Prevention of Terrorism Bill returns to the upper chamber for reconsideration. The legislation was amended in key respects by the Lords earlier this week in an [read more]

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