Legal news from Wednesday, September 13, 2006
20:09 EDT

[JURIST] Valerie Plame, the undercover operative whose revealed identity precipitated the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive], and her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, have now sued former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage [official profile] for serving as the primary source responsible for disclosing Plame's CIA affiliation to columnist [read more]

19:09 EDT

[JURIST] The US House Armed Services Committee [official website] approved [press release] its version of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 [text] Wednesday, a bill that would permit the use of military commissions [JURIST news archive] for terror detainees and enemy combatants. President Bush presented [JURIST report] the legislation [PDF [read more]

19:09 EDT

[JURIST] A Jordan military court concluded two separate terrorism cases Wednesday, convicting a total of 10 suspected militants, including two fugitives in absentia, of charges stemming from alleged plots to kill Americans in Jordan [JURIST news archive]. The court sentenced the suspects to terms ranging from 10 to 20 years [read more]

15:09 EDT

[JURIST] Two US congressmen on Wednesday filed a motion [PDF text; press release] in the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] requesting Judge Emmett Sullivan [official profile] to order the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) [official website] to provide a reasoned explanation for its decision to treat [read more]

14:09 EDT

[JURIST] UK Foreign Office Minister Kim Howells [official profile] called for the redefinition of "war crimes" in light of the recent Mideast conflict [JURIST news archive] between Israel and Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon, during a Wednesday hearing [press release] of the Foreign Affairs Committee of Parliament [official website]. Howells blamed [read more]

14:09 EDT

[JURIST] The US Senate Judiciary Committee [official website] approved the National Security Surveillance Act of 2006 [S 2453 summary] Wednesday, a bill that pushes forward Republicans' efforts to confer legal status on the Bush administration's domestic surveillance program [JURIST news archive], which involves warrantless wiretapping by the National Security Agency [read more]

12:09 EDT

[JURIST] Texas' highest court for criminal cases announced Wednesday that it will consider whether to reinstate conspiracy charges [JURIST document] against former US Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) [official profile; JURIST news archive]. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals [official website] granted a request [JURIST report] by Travis County Prosecutor Ronnie [read more]

11:09 EDT

[JURIST] China's Supreme People's Court [official website] has promulgated new rules aimed at preventing leaks of information regarding sensitive cases, and has established a system whereunder all court information will flow through court spokesmen, 65 of whom have already been appointed, according to a Wednesday China Daily report [text]. The [read more]

11:09 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge Tuesday ordered [PDF] the state of Missouri [JURIST news archive] to submit new protocols for carrying out the state death penalty [JURIST news archive] by lethal injection and has refused to authorize executions until revisions are approved. The order by US District Judge Fernando Gaitan [official [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] Russian President Vladimir Putin [official website, English version] has said he will not make an exception to the Russian Constitution [text] or other laws in order to pursue a third term [JURIST news archive] for himself in the scheduled 2008 Russian election. In a transcript [text, in Russian] posted [read more]

10:09 EDT

[JURIST] The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) [official website] presented a report [text] to the Australian Parliament [official website] Wednesday recommending [ALRC press release] that references to the term "sedition" in the new Australian anti-terrorism laws [ANS materials] be removed. The ALRC report presents the group's conclusions after a five-month [read more]

09:09 EDT

[JURIST] The National Assembly of Serbia [official website] voted 219-5 on Tuesday to refer to Kosovo as an "integral and historic" part of Serbia [press release] in Serbia's forthcoming constitution, voicing its opposition to efforts by Kosovo [government website; JURIST news archive] to form a fully independent nation. UN-sponsored talks [read more]

09:09 EDT

[JURIST] Former US Attorney General John Ashcroft [BBC profile], who resigned from the post in November 2004, told an audience at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Tuesday that President Bush has done less harm to civil liberties than any other wartime president in US history, and said that [read more]

08:09 EDT

[JURIST] The US military will not pursue the death penalty against US Marine Corps [official website] Lance Cpl. Jerry E. Shumate Jr. [legal defense fund blog] in the fatal shooting of an Iraqi civilian in Hamdania [JURIST news archive], a military prosecutor said Tuesday during an Article 32 [JAG backgrounder; [read more]

08:09 EDT

[JURIST] A lawyer for Momin Khawaja [CBC backgrounder], the first person charged [JURIST report] under Canada's Anti-Terrorism Act [text; CBC backgrounder], urged an Ontario Superior Court judge Tuesday to strike down the anti-terror legislation because it is unconstitutionally vague and violates several provisions of the Canadian Charter on Rights and [read more]

08:09 EDT

[JURIST] Munqidh Al Faraun, the chief prosecutor in the Saddam Hussein trial [JURIST news archive] requested Wednesday that presiding judge Abdullah al-Amiri remove himself from the case for reasons of bias, specifically, for allowing defense lawyers to make politically-charged statements in court. Al-Amiri was named trial judge [JURIST report] in [read more]

07:09 EDT

[JURIST] The chief US prosecutor for the military tribunals [JURIST news archive] at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, told reporters Tuesday that his office has begun preparing charge sheets for the 14 high-profile terror suspects [DNI profiles, PDF] who have been transferred from secret CIA prisons to Guantanamo Bay [JURIST report]. Col. [read more]

07:09 EDT

[JURIST] UK Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer [official profile; JURIST news archive] on Wednesday blasted the US for denying Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] detainees adequate access to the judicial system. In a speech [text] delivered in Sydney, Australia, on "The Role of Judges in a Modern Democracy," Falconer, who also [read more]

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