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Legal news from Wednesday, July 2, 2008
15:07 EDT

[JURIST] The International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] Wednesday ordered the release [decision, PDF; press release] of Congolese ex-militia leader Thomas Lubanga [ICC materials; BBC profile] after finding that past prosecutorial misconduct would prevent him from having a fair trial. The release order will go into effect in five days, [read more]

12:07 EDT

[JURIST] Washington DC police are launching a new voluntary program to reduce the number of guns in the city after the US Supreme Court ruled [JURIST report] last month that a city ban on private handgun ownership violated the Second Amendment [text] to the US Constitution. Under the Safe Homes [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] Belgium's Court of Cassation [official website, in French] Tuesday approved the transfer of former Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) [JURIST news archive] rebel leader Jean-Pierre Bemba [ICC profile; JURIST news archive] to the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] where he will face prosecution for war crimes. Bemba, who [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] Private security contractors operating in Iraq will no longer receive immunity from prosecution under a US-Iraqi agreement now in negotiation, Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari told AFP Tuesday. Contractors have worked largely above the law due to legal loopholes because the US government exempted its employees and contractors from Iraqi [read more]

11:07 EDT

[JURIST] The Cambodian lawyer representing former Khmer Rouge head of state Khieu Samphan [JURIST news archive] before the Extraordinary Chambers of the Court of Cambodia (ECCC) resigned [press release, PDF] Tuesday, citing health problems. Some have speculated [ECCCReparations op-ed] that Say Bory's resignation is related to controversial tactics employed by [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] A divison of the New York State Supreme Court dismissed [decision] remaining charges against former New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) [official website] CEO Richard Grasso [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] on Tuesday. Former NY Attorney General Eliot Spitzer had brought six charges against Grasso over his controversial $187.5 million compensation [read more]

10:07 EDT

[JURIST] A proposed Ethiopian law regulating non-governmental organizations, which it terms Civil Society Organizations (CSO), would severely undermine human rights efforts in the country, according to two separate reports issued Tuesday by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW) [PDF texts; joint press release]. The groups said that Ethiopia's Charities [read more]

09:07 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Rhode Island [official website] Tuesday overturned [decision, PDF] a 2006 jury verdict holding paint manufacturers liable [JURIST report] for contamination caused by lead-based paint. The court rejected state arguments that the paint companies had created a public nuisance, finding that they had no control over [read more]

09:07 EDT

[JURIST] The Shanghai People's Higher Court will broadcast its hearings online, a Shanghai judge announced Tuesday. China began televising live court cases [BBC report] in 1998, and the internet broadcasts are the newest element of its effort to increase judicial transparency. Speaking at a conference last week, Supreme People's Court [read more]

08:07 EDT

[JURIST] A report [text, PDF] from the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) [official website] has found that while US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) [official website] is not responsible for the 2006 deaths of two detainees, ICE officials do not always adhere to proper [read more]

08:07 EDT

[JURIST] Millions of Swedish citizens have filed electronic petitions [sample petitions, in Swedish] against the country's newly approved electronic wiretapping law [draft text, in Swedish], according to news reports Wednesday. The law was narrowly approved [JURIST report] earlier this month and gives the country's National Defence Radio Establishment [official website] [read more]

07:07 EDT

[JURIST] US Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) [official website] has criticized the Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) [official website] warrantless searches and seizures of travelers' laptops and other digital devices at the US border, calling the searches an unacceptable invasion of privacy [hearing materials]. The Supreme Court has held that reasonable suspicion [read more]

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