Legal news from Friday, September 9, 2005
20:09 EDT

[JURIST] US District Court Judge Janet Hall Friday agreed with the American Civil Liberties Union [advocacy website] that a gag order shielding the identity of librarians [JURIST report] who had received an FBI demand for records about library patrons under the Patriot Act prevented their library client from participating in [read more]

19:09 EDT

[JURIST] Fresh from talks this week with other justice and interior ministers of the European Union [official website], British Home Secretary Charles Clarke [official profile] said Friday that Britain, currently holding the EU presidency, wants the EU to implement a new set of anti-terror measures before the end of the [read more]

19:09 EDT

[JURIST] New Orleans city attorney Sherry Landry said Friday that the city is now "fully secured" following the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] and the disorder that broke out afterwards. She told a news conference that "Fourteen thousand troops are in Orleans Parish. At present they are [read more]

19:09 EDT

[JURIST] Pharmaceutical company Merck. [corporate website] said Friday that it has no plans to make a comprehensive deal to settle the thousands of cases against the company concerning side effects of its arthritis drug Vioxx [Merck consumer website; JURIST news archive]. The drug was withdrawn [Merck announcement] from the market [read more]

15:09 EDT

[JURIST] An Australian lawyers group is describing new anti-terrorism legislation [JURIST report] proposed by Australian Prime Minister John Howard [official profile] as "draconian" and has called on regional governments to reject it. The Law Society of New South Wales [profession website] said Friday that the proposal threatened civil rights and [read more]

15:09 EDT

[JURIST] A Mississippi judge on Friday ordered Edgar Ray Killen [JURIST news archive] to return to prison while he appeals his conviction for the 1964 killings of three civil rights workers. Circuit Judge Marcus Gordon revoked Killen's bail [JURIST report] during the appeal after District Attorney Mark Duncan presented evidence [read more]

15:09 EDT

[JURIST] The draft Iraqi constitution [JURIST news archive] is expected to receive final approval by the constitutional drafting committee [JURIST report] in coming days after the committee agreed Thursday to changes that appeared to ease tensions over the text. Abbas al-Bayati, a Shiite member of the drafting committee, said Friday [read more]

14:09 EDT

[JURIST] Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak [official profile; Wikipedia profile] was re-elected to another six-year term in a landslide victory announced Friday following Wednesday's multi-candidate presidential vote, the first held in Egypt [JURIST news archive]. The Presidential Election Commission [BBC backgrounder] announced the widely expected result of the 10 candidate race. [read more]

14:09 EDT

[JURIST] Irish voters remain undecided about the proposed European Constitution [text; JURIST news archive] despite plans to hold an Irish referendum on the document, according to a report issued Friday by the European Commission Representation in Ireland [official website]. The report [PDF text] showed that 50 percent of those surveyed [read more]

13:09 EDT

[JURIST] Faced with a daunting task of recovery after Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive], groups from the Gulf region have sought money from Congress, but they have also sought relief from myriad federal laws that could potentially hinder efforts to rebuild the region. Members of Congress have begun efforts to [read more]

13:09 EDT

[JURIST] ICTY Chief Prosecutor Carla del Ponte [official profile] has said that the handover of a top fugitive may not be necessary for a positive recommendation needed by Croatia to begin its bid for EU membership. The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia [official website; JURIST news archive] prosecutor [read more]

13:09 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that US Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is relieving FEMA Director Michael Brown [official profile] of his role in managing the federal government's Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] relief efforts. Brown will reportedly be replaced by Coast Guard Vice Adm. Thad W. Allen [official profile]. The [read more]

13:09 EDT

[JURIST] Emergency legislation allowing federal courts in New Orleans to relocate operations in the wake of Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] was signed by President Bush Thursday. Faced with a halt in judicial work [JURIST report] at courthouses in the devastated city, the House and Senate hurriedly approved HR 3650 [read more]

12:09 EDT

[JURIST] Hundreds of human rights supporters protested Thursday in European and North American cities over a proposal in the Canadian province of Ontario to set up special courts applying Islamic law on family issues. An Ontario government report [PDF text] discussed the possibility of creating voluntary courts applying Sharia [Wikipedia [read more]

12:09 EDT

[JURIST] Eight Russians previously held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] are planning to sue the US for illegally detaining them, a Russian radio station reported Thursday. Among the eight, Airat Vakhitov has been the most vocal, working with rights activists in Moscow, writing a book on his experience at [read more]

12:09 EDT

[JURIST] A military jury acquitted US Army Sgt. Darin Broady Thursday of charges of alleged abuse, making Broady the second reservist cleared [JURIST report] in the death of an Afghan detainee [Wikipedia backgrounder] in 2002 at Bagram Air Base. Broady faced charges of aggravated assault, maltreatment and making false statements. [read more]

11:09 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Friday's states brief, former Miami Herald [newspaper website] columnist Jim DeFede will not be prosecuted for secretly taping phone conversations with Miami city commissioner Arthur T. Teele Jr. [Wikipedia backgrounder] just before Teele killed himself. Assistant State Attorney Joseph Centorino said Friday that the actions could have been [read more]

11:09 EDT

[JURIST] California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger [official profile] promised to veto a bill [PDF text; legislative materials] approved by the state senate on Thursday that would create a driver's license for illegal immigrants in the state. California originally stopped issuing such licenses 12 years ago, but in 2003 former Governor Gray [read more]

11:09 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers close to the investigation into the leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity [JURIST news archive] say the 20-month probe may be reaching an end in the coming weeks. New York Times reporter Judith Miller has been jailed since July 6 [JURIST report] for refusing to testify before [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] Sandy Berger [Wikipedia profile], who served as President Clinton's National Security Adviser from 1997 to 2001, was ordered to pay a $50,000 fine and surrender his security clearance for three years on Thursday after pleading guilty to taking and destroying classified documents [JURIST report] from the National Archives. He [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that the US Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has denied the habeas appeal of Jose Padilla [JURIST news archive], ruling that the "dirty bomb" suspect can be detained without charges indefinitely. Padilla's attorneys had challenged his designation as an enemy combatant. Previously in JURIST's Paper Chase...Lawyer [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] The US District Court for the Southern District of Ohio upheld on Thursday a state law that requires minors to get parental consent for an abortion and for all women to meet with a doctor 24 hours before the procedure. The court ruled that the requirements were not "undue [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] With Washington reeling from criticism about its response to Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive], lawmakers are again considering relaxation of the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 [Wikipedia backgrounder; text of 18 US Code s. 1385], which generally prohibits federal soldiers or National Guard troops under federal control from operating [read more]

09:09 EDT

[JURIST] New Orleans police are preparing to carry out Mayor Ray Nagin's forced removal order [JURIST document] Friday as the last voluntary evacuees left the city Thursday. Earlier this week, Nagin authorized the forced removal [JURIST report] of anyone not engaged in the Hurricane Katrina [JURIST news archive] recovery effort. [read more]

08:09 EDT

[JURIST] The UN has announced Thursday that 63 nations have agreed to sign a new treaty against nuclear terrorism. The International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism [PDF text; CDI backgrounder] requires governments to punish those who illegally posses atomic devices and radioactive material or those who [read more]

08:09 EDT

[JURIST] In its latest bi-monthly report on human rights in Iraq [text] the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) [official website] Thursday detailed widespread and lengthy detentions of suspected Sunni insurgents, systematic use of torture during interrogations at police stations and other Ministry of the Interior [Global Security backgrounder] [read more]

07:09 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers representing stockholders of Walt Disney Co. [corporate website] are appealing a decision [PDF text; JURIST report] that held that Disney board members did not violate their fiduciary duties or waste company resources when they hired and fired former Hollywood agent Michael Ovitz [Wikipedia backgrounder]. Disney shareholders had challenged [read more]

07:09 EDT

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit Thursday questioned the US administration's approach to detentions at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive], where almost all detainees have been categorized by Combatant Status Review Tribunals [US DOD materials] as enemy combatants. During oral arguments, Judge A. Raymond Randolph suggested [read more]

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