Legal news from Tuesday, July 5, 2005
21:07 EDT

[JURIST] The US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled [opinion, PDF] Tuesday that the prison therapist of a Montana inmate did not violate the psychologist-patient privilege when he contacted the Secret Service to report a letter the inmate wrote threatening to kill President Bush. Robert Romo sent the letter to [read more]

20:07 EDT

[JURIST] A Kuwaiti judge has approved an independent medical commission to investigate allegations of torture by 37 detainees being held by Kuwaiti authorities for plotting attacks against US soldiers and killing four policemen in January. The medical board, made up of three medical professors from Kuwait University [Health Sciences Center [read more]

19:07 EDT

[JURIST] A judge Tuesday pre-approved a $120 million settlement agreement [Covington diocese press release] for class action plaintiffs claiming they were molested by priests of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Covington [official website] in Kentucky, marking the largest settlement agreement yet for US church abuse victims. The ruling allows $40 [read more]

18:07 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Tuesday's corporations and securities law news, a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) [official website] spokesman said today that the agency still plans to pursue a $785 million civil suit against former HealthSouth Corp. [corporate website] CEO Richard Scrushy [official website] despite his acquittal [JURIST report] last week in [read more]

16:07 EDT

[JURIST] US National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley [White House profile] said Tuesday that President Bush has not changed his position on environmental policy but wants to broaden the debate at the G8 summit [official website] on matters beyond the Kyoto accord. Hadley said Bush was concerned with focussing on solving [read more]

15:07 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Tuesday's states brief, the Oklahoma Supreme Court Tuesday struck down the Oklahoma Municipal Employees Collective Bargaining Act [text] as unconstitutional. The state law allowed municipal employees to unionize in cities with populations greater than 35,000. The court found the law unconstitutional because it discriminated against municipal workers in [read more]

15:07 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Tuesday's international brief, Nepal Bar Association [profession website] president Shambhu Thapa has called on King Gyanedra [official profile] to relinquish his position as chairman of the Council of Ministers, which would effectively remove Gyanedra's direct control of the Nepalese government. Thapa criticized the five months of direct, monarchial [read more]

14:07 EDT

[JURIST] Interior ministers for Britain, France, Italy, Spain and Germany meeting prior to the G8 summit [official website] Tuesday announced a plan to put together joint flights to deport illegal immigrants from the European Union. The plan calls for planes to stop in each of the five nations to pick [read more]

14:07 EDT

[JURIST] The prospects for an EU software patent directive [PDF proposal text] that would create a uniform software patenting system across Europe appeared limited Tuesday as European legislators expressed reservations about the measure. Many legislators and software companies fear that the law [EU FAQ] would limit innovation and restrict the [read more]

13:07 EDT

[JURIST] Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald on Tuesday demanded the grand jury testimony [government memorandum, PDF] of TIME magazine reporter Matthew Cooper, even though TIME has turned over e-mails and other documents [JURIST report; TIME statement] to the probe into who leaked the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame [Wikipedia profile]. [read more]

13:07 EDT

[JURIST] African leaders Tuesday approved a resolution at the fifth African Union Summit [official website] seeking two permanent seats on the expanding UN Security Council [official website]. The AU is calling for the number of Council seats be increased from 15 to 26, with six of the new members granted [read more]

13:07 EDT

[JURIST] A German court said Tuesday that Sasser computer worm [Wikipedia backgrounder] author Sven Jaschan has admitted to data manipulation, computer sabotage and interfering with public corporations in one of the largest worm attacks conducted on the Internet. The destructive computer worm began knocking out the nearly 1 million computer [read more]

12:07 EDT

[JURIST] The trial of radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza [BBC profile] on 16 terrorism-related charges [JURIST report], including promoting the murder of Jews and others, began in London Tuesday. Hamza, who pleaded not guilty to all charges in January, was arrested by British police in May 2004 after US authorities [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] The head of a major UN study on worldwide child abuse [official website] opened a conference [official website] of government and human rights officials from 52 countries in Europe and Central Asia taking place in Slovenia [press release] Tuesday by observing that in many countries, children are "treated like [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive] announced Tuesday that the trial of former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] will begin in January 2007. The tribunal also said it expected the trial to take at least a [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] Iowa Governor Tom Vislack [official profile] Monday made good on a promise to restore voting rights to convicted felons once their sentences has been served. Last month he announced he would sign [JURIST report] an executive order to automatically restore voting privileges [official press release] on July 4. Previously, [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] Senior Sunni clerics will soon announce plans to issue a religious edict, or fatwa, encouraging Sunni Muslims in Iraq to join the political process and support the drafting of a new Iraqi constitution, according to Adnan Dulaimi, head of the Sunni Endowment in charge of Sunni religious affairs, speaking [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] A spokesman for the Iranian Judiciary [official website in Arabic] Tuesday denied reports that a man convicted of blinding another person would have his eyes surgically removed, saying the country would not carry out such a punishment. Earlier, an Iranian newspaper reported that the Iranian Supreme Court [official website] [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] The province of Quebec asked the Supreme Court of Canada [official website] on Monday for an 18-month stay of its ruling that overturned a ban on private health insurance [JURIST report]. The court found in favor of a Montreal man who objected to a law [text] that blocked him [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] Indonesia Tuesday formally rejected a UN recommendation [JURIST report] that an international tribunal investigate and try those accused of human rights violations in its former province of East Timor [Wikipedia backgrounder] during the independence troubles there in 1999. While Indonesia and now-separate East Timor had previously agreed to establish [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] In an interview with USA Today, President Bush Monday called for special-interest groups to "tone down the heated rhetoric" [interview excerpts] over the new US Supreme Court vacancy created by Friday's retirement of Sandra Day O'Connor [JURIST report] and focus on the "credentials and philosophy" of potential nominees. Bush [read more]

09:07 EDT

[JURIST] The Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday that the US Congress should "correct its mistaken ways" and "stop interfering in the normal commercial exchanges" between the two nations in response to House objections [BBC report] to a $18.5 billion bid [JURIST report] by the China National Offshore [read more]

09:07 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers for the state of Israel have argued in court papers filed with the Israeli High Court that moving a portion of the fully-constructed Security Fence [official website] as requested by Palestinian villagers is precluded by cost, said to be the first public admission by Israel that the route [read more]

09:07 EDT

[JURIST] Philippines President Gloria Arroyo [official website] said in a statement Tuesday that she "welcomed" the endorsement of an impeachment complaint against her, eager for a chance to refute allegations of voter fraud in the 2004 national election. A controversial audio tape [Manila Sun-Star report] allegedly documents Arroyo planning to [read more]

08:07 EDT

[JURIST] A member of Swaziland's Parliament says that King Mswati III [BBC profile] has sent the country's proposed Constitution [link to PDF], adopted by the House of Assembly and Senate in June [JURIST report] back to the country's parliament [official website] for further debate. While the document maintains broad powers [read more]

08:07 EDT

[JURIST] In an unusual move sidestepping parliament, the French Cabinet Monday removed the legal difference between "legitimate" children, born to married parents, and "natural" children, born to unmarried parents. The distinction had been established in the original 1804 French Napoleonic code. In the future, as opposed to having to specially [read more]

08:07 EDT

[JURIST] Iranian president-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [BBC profile] said Monday that allegations that he is the man in a photo [JURIST report] taken during the 1979 hostage crisis are "baseless", according to report by the state IRNA news agency. An advisor to outgoing Iranian president Mohammad Khatamihas earlier denied the allegations [read more]

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