Legal news from Monday, October 17, 2005
21:10 EDT

[JURIST] A lawyer who has worked with Saddam Hussein's defense team said Monday that the defense will likely begin pre-trial proceedings on Tuesday by once again requesting a six month delay. The defense is expected to argue that it has not been given 45 days to review all prosecution documents [read more]

20:10 EDT

[JURIST] Susan Wood, former director of the US Food and Drug Administration's Department of Women’s Health [official website] said Monday that the FDA’s refusal earlier this year to consider over-the-counter sales of Plan B [FDA backgrounder], also known as the morning-after pill, was based on political considerations rather than scientific [read more]

19:10 EDT

[JURIST] A tax reform interest group chairman says that the President’s Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform [official site] created last January to consider alternatives to the current US income tax system will probably not recommend any major changes to the code when it submit its report to the Treasury [read more]

16:10 EDT

[JURIST] According to an attorney for former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) [official website; campaign website], prosecutors in his case offered DeLay a deal that would have allowed him to plead guilty to misdemeanor charges, thus avoiding felony charges of money laundering and criminal conspiracy. In a letter from [read more]

16:10 EDT

[JURIST] In a White House meeting Monday with visiting Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov [official profile], President Bush urged the Libyan government to release five Bulgarian nurses sentenced to death for intentionally causing an AIDS outbreak at a Benghazi children's hospital in 1999. The story made international headlines last year when [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul [official website, English version] has taken the unusual step of criticizing the state case against Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk [official website; TIME profile], calling his prosecution for "public denigration of Turkish identity" contrary to the efforts of the government to extend greater individual rights [read more]

15:10 EDT

[JURIST] After being signed into law [JURIST report] by President Bush last April, an overhauled US bankruptcy law goes into effect Monday making it more difficult for consumers to prove that they should be allowed to clear their debts and make a "fresh start." The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Iranian officials have approved the basic outlines of a "single-urgency" bill providing for the suspension of Iran's voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol [IAEA report] to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) [text]. Mahmoud Mohammadi, a member of the Iranian commission that approved the changes, said the government would suspend [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Republican and Democratic sources said Monday that Senate Republicans have proposed the week of November 7th to begin confirmation hearings for beleaguered US Supreme Court candidate Harriet Miers [JURIST news archive]. Though Republicans are seeking a vote by the full Senate prior to Thanksgiving, it was not immediately clear [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] Lawyers representing 10 terror suspects and 13 human rights groups, including Amnesty International [AI press release] and Human Rights Watch [HRW press release], appeared before Britain's House of Lords[official website] Monday arguing against a 2004 appeals court ruling [ABC report; JURIST report] allowing Special Immigration Appeals Commission [official website] [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] An FBI report on US crime [PDF] released Monday found that while murders in the US fell for the first time in five years, 2004 saw an increase in the number of rapes. Overall the number of violent crimes fell by 1.2 percent and property crimes dropped 1.1 percent. [read more]

12:10 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [JURIST news archive] ruled Monday that death row inmates [JURIST news archive] do not have an automatic right to a jury trial to determine whether or not an inmate is mentally retarded and therefore ineligible for execution. The unsigned opinion [PDF text] comes three years [read more]

12:10 EDT

[JURIST] AP is reporting that the Iraqi electoral commission [official website] says it will recheck "unusually high numbers" in constitutional referendum results from certain areas of the country to make sure the poll meets international standards. A Sunni leader Sunday claimed that Sunnis in four provinces had voted against [UPI [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The British government on Monday proposed allowing non-lawyers to partner with lawyers to run combined firms and the creation of an independent body to handle complaints against legal professionals. The proposed reforms to the legal profession in England and Wales were outlined by the Department for Constitutional Affairs (DCA) [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court Monday lifted [PDF order] a temporary stay [JURIST report] issued late Friday that blocked a lower court order allowing prison officials in Missouri to transport a pregnant inmate to a medical facility for an abortion. Justice Clarence Thomas had issued the stay pending a decision [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Dutch Equal Opportunities Commission will hear the nation's first case brought by a Muslim woman who was refused a job because she would not wear a headscarf [JURIST news archive]. The Islamic College in Amsterdam refused to hire Samira Haddad for an Arabic teaching job because she refused [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] France's former Interior Minister Charles Pasqua [BBC profile] said Monday that he did not profit from the now defunct UN Oil-for-Food Program [official website; JURIST news archive] in Iraq. A US Senate report [PDF text; JURIST report; BBC Q/A] released in May alleged that Pasqua, France's former UN Ambassador [read more]

09:10 EDT

[JURIST] Australian Prime Minister John Howard [official profile] said Monday he will not be forced into weakening the government's tough new anti-terrorism measures [draft law text, PDF; JURIST news archive]. The draft legislation, leaked onto the Internet [JURIST report] last Friday by the concerned Chief Minister of the Australian Capital [read more]

08:10 EDT

[JURIST] UK Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer [official website] said Sunday that although he agreed with the Government's position that extended periods of custody in detaining terror suspects were needed, detainments must be monitored by a judge. Speaking on BBC television's Sunday AM, Falconer said [transcript] that a judge overseeing the [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi [official website, English version] honored the country's war dead by praying at Tokyo's Yasukuni Shrine [official website] Monday, despite conflicting court decisions on the constitutionality of Koizumi's visits to the shrine. Last month, the Osaka High Court ruled [JURIST report] that the visits violate [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] US Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers [JURIST news archive; Washington Post profile] will offer her first rebuttal to concerns over her qualifications [JURIST report] Monday in answers to a Senate questionnaire on several topics, including judicial activism. White House strategists say that Miers' approach will be to reassure conservative [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] An official from Bali's Denpasar district court said Monday that politicians and legal officials will be sent to the prison which houses three men convicted in the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings [BBC report] in an attempt to speed up their executions. In 2003, Amrozi bin Nurhasyim, Mukhlas and Imam [read more]

07:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Egyptian government ordered Sunday that five members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood [party website in Arabic; Wikipedia backgrounder] be released after they had been detained for five months without charges. The Muslim Brotherhood, established in 1928 and banned in 1954, renounced violence in the 1970s and is thought [read more]

06:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Iraqi Criminal Tribunal (formerly known as the Iraqi Special Tribunal [official website]), the court established to try Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] and other former Iraqi officials, could violate international standards for fair trials, according to a briefing paper, The Former Iraqi Government on Trial [text], released [read more]

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