Legal news from Wednesday, April 4, 2007
22:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) [official websites] have filed suit [IRS press release] against five Jackson Hewitt [corporate website] franchises, seeking an injunction to bar the companies from preparing tax returns and alleging that all five corporations were involved in fraudulent tax return [read more]

20:04 EDT

[JURIST] The government of Thailand [JURIST news archive] Wednesday banned access to the popular video-sharing website YouTube [corporate website] and several other websites that contain material deemed offensive to the country's monarch. The YouTube ban resulted from a video depicting King Bhumibol Adulyadej [Wikipedia profile] as a clown with feet [read more]

19:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Fiji Human Rights Commission (FHRC) [advocacy website] has accused Australian mining company Emperor Gold [corporate website] of human rights violations at Fiji's Vatukoula gold mine [Emperor Gold backgrounder]. The FHRC claims that mine workers have been subjected to sub-standard housing, paid disproportionate wages, and exposed to hazardous gases. [read more]

18:04 EDT

[JURIST] The UK hacker behind unprecedented cyberattacks on US military and NASA computer systems in late 2001 and early 2002 lost an appeal Tuesday in the UK High Court to avoid extradition to the US. Last May, a UK judge recommended extradition [JURIST report] for Gary McKinnon [CNET interview; advocacy [read more]

18:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Iowa House Human Resources Committee [official website] on Tuesday approved SF427 [text], a bill to extend the state's civil rights protections to gays and lesbians. The bill, which still awaits passage by the full Iowa House [official website], was passed by the full Senate last week [JURIST report] [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official website] Wednesday urged all countries to sign and abide by international treaties banning landmines International Mine Awareness Day [press release]. Those treaties include the Ottawa Treaty [text; ICBL backgrounder], which bans all anti-personnel landmines, and the Protocol Five to the Certain Conventional Weapons Convention [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] The state of North Carolina is violating international freedom of association labor standards [ILO materials] by prohibiting governmental entities from bargaining with unions, according to a decision released Tuesday by the International Labor Organization (ILO) [official website], the labor standards branch of the United Nations. North Carolina General Statute [read more]

13:04 EDT

[JURIST] Iraqi Shiite religious leader Grand Ayatollah al-Sistani [official website; JURIST news archive] said Tuesday he in fact did not oppose a proposed law [JURIST report] which would return former Baath party [BBC backgrounder] members to their previously held government positions, as initially reported [JURIST report] Sunday. A spokesperson for [read more]

13:04 EDT

[JURIST] A former Bosnian Serb soldier was sentenced to 15 years in prison [judgment text, PDF; summary] Wednesday on rape and torture charges by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website]. Dragan Zelenovic [ICTY case backgrounder] was accused [indictment] of raping eight Bosnian Muslim women under [read more]

12:04 EDT

[JURIST] Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [official website, in Persian] announced Wednesday at a news conference [IRNA report] in Tehran that he had "pardoned" and was releasing 15 British military personnel detained [JURIST report] by Iranian forces earlier this month, and would not bring them to trial. An Iranian ambassador had [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko [official website; BBC profile] has refused to rescind Monday's decree [statement] ordering parliament to dissolve and new elections to be held in May as the constitutional crisis in Ukraine continues. On Tuesday, Yushchenko met with his main political rival, Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych [BBC profile], [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] Australian Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] will not speak to the media in violation of a court order, Hicks' lawyer said Wednesday. Despite statements by Australian Attorney-General Philip Ruddock [official profile] that Australia cannot enforce the gag order [JURIST report] once Hicks returns to [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] Human Rights groups REDRESS and the International Federation for Human Rights [advocacy websites] said Tuesday that the European Union should hold trials for the 37 Rwandan genocide suspects known to be living in European countries. The suspects have been living in Belgium, France, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] Monica M. Goodling, on leave from her post as special counsel to the US Attorney General, told the House Judiciary Committee [JURIST report] on Tuesday that she will not speak to the committee about her role in last year's firing of eight US attorneys [JURIST news archive]. Committee members [read more]

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