Legal news from Thursday, April 3, 2008
19:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit [official website] Thursday overturned [opinion, PDF] class action certification for a lawsuit brought by "light" cigarette smokers against Philip Morris USA Inc., R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. [corporate websites] and other light cigarette makers. The class action, which included anyone who [read more]

19:04 EDT

[JURIST] The detention of five prominent members of the Hindu Rights Action Force [organization website] is proper because they are a threat to national security, Malaysian Attorney General Abdul Gani Patail [official profile] told the country's Federal Court Thursday. Gani disputed arguments [JURIST report] made Wednesday by the detainees' lawyer [read more]

18:04 EDT

[JURIST] Turkish Chief Prosecutor Abdurrahman Yalcinkaya [official profile, in Turkish] said on Wednesday that critics of his decision to seek the disbanding of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) [party website, in Turkish] could face legal action. Yalcinkaya, who earlier this month petitioned the country's Constitutional Court to disband [read more]

17:04 EDT

[JURIST] Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius [official website] Thursday signed legislation [press release] that bans protests within 150 feet of a funeral one hour before, during and two hours after the end of a service. The Kansas funeral privacy act [PDF text; supplemental note, PDF] also prohibits impeding a procession by [read more]

17:04 EDT

[JURIST] The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive] Thursday acquitted [judgment summary; press release] former Kosovo prime minister and Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) commander Ramush Haradinaj [BBC profile] of all charges. Haradinaj and his two co-defendants, KLA fighters Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj [read more]

17:04 EDT

[JURIST] Zimbabwe security forces Thursday detained journalists [CPJ press release] working for the New York Times and the Canadian Broadcasting Coiporation and raided offices belonging to opposition candidates in what some see as indications that long-time Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] may refuse to relinquish power [read more]

17:04 EDT

[JURIST] Law enforcement officials from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) [official website] violated the constitutional privacy and due process rights of suspected illegal aliens by raiding their homes [CSJ backgrounder], according to a complaint [PDF text] filed in New Jersey federal court Thursday. The lawsuit alleges that immigration [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] The European Union [official website; JURIST news archive] Thursday certified [press release] that Kosovo's constitution [text] is in line with its international obligations, guaranteeing the individual and community rights of all its citizens. The constitution is expected to come into effect on June 15, close to the date that [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] The European Union's Court of First Instance [official website] Thursday ruled [judgment] that the Council of the European Union [official website] improperly listed the militant Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK) [party website; FAS backgrounder] on its list of terrorist organizations in 2002 because it failed to state its justifications for [read more]

15:04 EDT

[JURIST] Milberg Weiss [firm website] partner and co-founder Melvyn Weiss pleaded guilty [plea deal text, PDF] Wednesday to one count of racketeering conspiracy stemming from a long-running US Attorney investigation into an alleged kickback scheme. Weiss was indicted last year for conspiracy, racketeering, obstruction of justice and making false statements [read more]

15:04 EDT

[JURIST] All 50 states have been granted extensions [DHS press release] to comply with new requirements under the REAL ID Act [PDF text; JURIST news archive], the US Department of Homeland Security said Wednesday. The extension pushes back the deadline for states to begin implementing new, more secure drivers' licenses [read more]

09:04 EDT

[JURIST] Chinese human rights activist Hu Jia [advocacy blog] was sentenced Thursday to 3.5 years in prison on charges of inciting subversion of state power [JURIST news archive]. Hu's trial [HRW case history; JURIST report] began last month; he was formally charged in February after he made public [JURIST reports] [read more]

09:04 EDT

[JURIST] Liberia struggles with corruption in its criminal justice system, poor detention conditions and sexual and gender-based violence, including rape and forced marriage, according to a UN Mission in Liberia [official website] combined quarterly report [PDF text; press release] covering May-October 2007 that was released Wednesday. The report recommended that [read more]

08:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Egyptian state prosecutor ordered an investigation Wednesday into accusations that 147 members of the opposition Muslim Brotherhood [party website; FAS backgrounder] caused riots during unauthorized protests on Tuesday against the government for not allowing them to participate in municipal elections set for April 8. Egyptian security forces Tuesday [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US Justice Department advised the Bush administration in October 2001 that the protection against unreasonable searches and seizures enshrined in the Fourth Amendment [text] to the US Constitution did not apply to "domestic military operations" conducted in pursuit of terrorism suspects after the Sept. 11 attacks [JURIST news [read more]

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