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Legal news from Tuesday, April 17, 2007
20:04 EDT

[JURIST] A delegation of European Parliament [official website] members told two subcommittees of the US House of Representatives [official website] Tuesday that the use of extraordinary renditions [JURIST news archive] by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) [official website] is illegal. At the hearing [notice] conducted by the House Foreign [read more]

19:04 EDT

[JURIST] US Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) [official website] announced [press release, PDF] Tuesday that the Senate Appropriations Committee [official website] he chairs has agreed to adopt new standards governing so-called earmarks [CRS backgrounder, PDF] inserted by legislators into bills to fund special spending projects. The proposed ethics and earmark reform [read more]

17:04 EDT

[JURIST] Ugandan police fired on a Kampala press briefing held by political activists and opposition leaders on Tuesday, five days after violent protests caused the deaths of three people [BBC report]. Leaders of the Forum for Democratic Change [party website], the Democratic Party [party website], the Conservative Party [Wikipedia backgrounder] [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Polish National Remembrance Institute [official website] ruled Tuesday that former Polish President Wojciech Jaruzelski [official website, in Polish; BBC profile] and eight former officials can be charged with "Communist crimes" for imposing martial law [Polish government backgrounder] in Poland in 1981. Jaruzelski, now 83, already faces charges [JURIST [read more]

16:04 EDT

[JURIST] Charges have been dropped against a US Marine in exchange for his testimony in hearings regarding the November 2005 killing of 24 Iraqi civilians in Haditha [USMC timeline; JURIST news archive], the Marine Corps announced Tuesday. Sgt. Sanick Dela Cruz, originally charged with unpremeditated murder and making a false [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] Egypt [JURIST news archive] police have arrested an Egyptian engineer on charges of spying on an atomic research program for Israel, AP reported Tuesday. According to Egyptian High State Security Prosecutor Hisham Badawi, Muhammad Sayed Saber allegedly gave files from his work at the Egyptian Atomic Energy Agency [FAS [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler [official profile] said Tuesday that Maryland will not challenge a decision [PDF opinion] by the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit [official website] holding that the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) [text] preempts the Maryland Fair Share Health Care [read more]

14:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US House Judiciary Committee [official website] will consider a resolution granting immunity to Monica M. Goodling [JURIST news archive], former special counsel to the US Attorney General, in exchange for her testimony concerning last year's firing of eight US Attorneys [JURIST news archive], according to a prepared statement [read more]

13:04 EDT

[JURIST] UN Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs Nicholas Michel [official profile] promised Tuesday that a tribunal [JURIST news archive] to try suspects in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri [JURIST news archive] would be established, despite disagreement among Lebanese leaders. In February, the UN and Lebanon reached an [read more]

13:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Constitutional Court of Ukraine [official website] held hearings Tuesday on a controversial April 2 decree [text; Yushchenko statement] by Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko [official website; BBC profile] ordering the dissolution of parliament and new elections on May 27. By a vote of 11 to 7, the court decided [read more]

12:04 EDT

[JURIST] The trial of US Army Spc. Mario Lozano [defense website; Wikipedia profile] for the murder of Italian intelligence agent Nicola Calipari [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] and attempted murders of agent Andrea Carpani and Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena [Wikipedia profile] began in Italy Tuesday. The court immediately adjourned proceedings [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] A panel of US copyright judges Monday denied a request [PDF order] by a group of private and public webcasters to reconsider a royalty hike for playing digital music that broadcasters say could ruin the webcasting industry. The Copyright Royalty Board [official website] last month decided to change the [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] The father of a Guantanamo Bay detainee accused CIA officials of torturing his son - Pakistani terror suspect Majid Khan [GlobalSecurity profile] - after arresting him in Pakistan in March 2003, according to an affidavit [PDF text; press release] released Monday. Khan was one of 14 "high value" prisoners [read more]

11:04 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge Monday refused a request to close portions of the upcoming espionage trial of two former American Israel Public Affairs Committee [advocacy website] lobbyists because doing so would violate the defendants' right to an open trial. The lobbyists, Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman, were indicted [PDF text; [read more]

10:04 EDT

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] handed down decisions in three cases Tuesday, including Watters v. Wachovia Bank [Duke Law case backgrounder; JURIST report], where the Court held that the National Bank Act [text] and regulations promulgated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency [read more]

08:04 EDT

[JURIST] Arafat Rahman, the son of former Bangladeshi Prime Minister Khaleda Zia [Virtual Bangladesh profile], was released Tuesday after being arrested [JURIST report] the day before on corruption allegations, according to local media reports. The reason for Arafat's release was not apparent Tuesday, but negotiations between Zia and the military-backed [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] The Nigerian electoral commission said Tuesday that Nigerian Vice President Atiku Abubakar [official website] would be included on the ballots for this coming Saturday's presidential elections, after the Nigerian Supreme Court [official website] overturned his disqualification [JURIST report] as a candidate. A spokesman for the Independent National Electoral Commission [read more]

07:04 EDT

[JURIST] A federal judge began hearings Monday to decide whether John Hinckley, Jr. [PBS profile] should be given more freedom outside the mental hospital where he was sent after being found not guilty by reason of insanity in the 1981 attempted assassination of US President Ronald Reagan [Wikipedia backgrounder]. Hospital [read more]

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