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Legal news from Friday, February 10, 2006
16:02 EDT

[JURIST] Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive] defense lawyer and former head of the Jordanian Lawyers Association Saleh al-Armouti said Friday that Hussein has claimed that the United States had offered him life in exile "like Napoleon" if he would use his influence to end the Iraq insurgency. Armouti said Hussein [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Advancement Project [advocacy website], a Washington, DC-based advocacy group, has filed a federal lawsuit challenging election plans for New Orleans [JURIST report], alleging that the plan puts too much emphasis on absentee voting and would keep blacks out of office. According to the lawsuit [complaint, PDF; press release], [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Friday's environmental law news, a California law that makes it illegal to throw away electronic waste went into effect Thursday. Under the law [CIWMB backgrounder], residents will have to take most consumer electronic equipment, including computers, printers, VCRs, microwave ovens, fluorescent lighting, glass thermometers, old thermostats and batteries, [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] Hong Kong High Court Justice Michael Hartmann has ruled [decision text, in English] that an executive order on covert surveillance operations made last year by Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen [official profile] is unconstitutional. Instead of immediately repealing it, however, he gave the government six months to replace it, [read more]

14:02 EDT

[JURIST] Conrad Black [JURIST news archive], former chairman of media company Hollinger International [corporate website], told a US federal judge in Chicago Friday that he would prefer to have a trial soon. Black appeared at a court hearing held to assess the progress of the case against him. In December [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] The government of mainly-Muslim Malaysia has imposed a blanket ban on the controversial caricatures of Muhammad [JURIST news archive], making it an offense to publish, import, produce, manufacture, circulate, distribute or even possess the cartoons originally printed in a Danish newspaper in September and since republished in newspapers around [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] Initial results from the February 7 presidential election [JURIST report; BBC backgrounder] in Haiti indicate that Rene Preval [BBC profile; Wikipedia profile], a former president and ally of ousted leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] has won with over 60 percent of the vote. If the current [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] Iraq's election chief on Friday announced certified results in the December 15 parliamentary elections [JURIST news archive], confirming results announced [JURIST report] by the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq (IECI) [official website] last month. Of the 275 seats, 128 now belong to the United Iraqi Alliance [BBC profile], the [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi [official profile] has decided not to submit a bill to parliament that would allow women to succeed to the throne, Japanese media reported Friday. Koizumi had supported a proposal [JURIST report] that would change the country's male-only succession law, the 1947 Imperial Household Law [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] US Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) [official website] and 14 other Republican senators have introduced a proposal that would rewrite an asbestos bill to allow asbestos-related lawsuits only under strict medical criteria, rather than establishing a $140 billion fund [JURIST report] for all victims. Cornyn introduced the plan as an [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] Andrew Lindberg [corporate profile], chief executive of the Australian Wheat Board (AWB) [corporate website], has stepped down from his position as the Australian judicial inquiry [Cole Commission website] continues its fourth week of investigations into alleged Australian connections to the Iraqi oil-for-food scandal [JURIST news archive]. Lindberg has given [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] The number of discrimination charges against private employers filed with the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission [official website] declined by five percent in 2005 [press release], the third straight year the number of complaints fell. EEOC officials point to several factors as potential causes of the decrease, including the [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Leading Friday's international brief, Zimbabwe Lands Minister Didymus Mutasa has told reporters that following controversial constitutional reforms [JURIST report] that took effect last year, there are no longer any white farmers operating legally in Zimbabwe. Mutasa said on state television late Thursday that all farmland is now owned by [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Air Force [official website] on Thursday released revised interim guidelines [PDF text; press release] concerning the free exercise of religion in the Air Force which remove several restrictions on the promotion of religious beliefs. The revised guidelines, endorsed by the National Conference on Ministry to the Armed [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] After receiving a royal pardon, Cambodian opposition leader Sam Rainsy [BBC profile; party website] returned home to Cambodia Friday after a year of self-imposed exile in France. Sam Rainsy had fled to France after his parliamentary immunity was revoked [JURIST report] for accusing Prime Minister Hun Sen [BBC profile] [read more]

07:02 EDT

[JURIST] A long-term renewal of the USA Patriot Act [PDF text; JURIST news archive] now seems likely as four key Republican senators who had been holding out on approving an extension have reached an agreement [JURIST report] with the White House. Sixteen key provisions [DOJ report, PDF] of the Patriot [read more]

07:02 EDT

[JURIST] Court documents filed by Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald [official website] in the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive] show that I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [CBS profile], Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, testified to a federal grand jury that he was authorized by superiors to leak information contained [read more]

05:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit [official website] on Thursday instructed a lower court to reconsider a challenge to Georgia's controversial voter ID law [PDF text] that required voters to show government-issued photo identification before casting their ballots, but left in place an injunction [PDF text; [read more]

04:02 EDT

[JURIST Europe] Belgium is set to become the fourteenth European Union country to ratify the European Constitution [official text; JURIST news archive] following its approval by the lower house of the Flemish Parliament [government website in Flemish]. The constitutional treaty was approved Wednesday by a majority of 84 to 29. [read more]

02:02 EDT

[JURIST Europe] In an apparent political climbdown, UK Home Secretary Charles Clarke [official profile] has approved publication of proposed amendments to the controversial British Identity Cards Bill [official PDF text] that would require another Act of Parliament be passed to make the cards mandatory. The bill currently requires that anyone [read more]

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