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Legal news from Monday, September 17, 2007
by Melissa Bancroft

Closing arguments began Monday in the case against the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, a Muslim foundation charged with financing international terrorism by supporting the Palestinian group Hamas. Once the largest Muslim charity in the United States, federal prosecutors shut down the Holy Land Foundation in 2001 and subsequently charged the organization and …

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by Melissa Bancroft

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso Monday called on the UK to support the proposed EU Reform Treaty. During a speech to delegates of the UK Liberal Democratic Party, Barroso emphasized that the reform treaty is not simply a retread of the failed EU constitution rejected by French and Dutch …

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by Leslie Schulman

New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg Monday filed a joint lawsuit against pharmaceutical giant Merck, alleging that the company misrepresented known dangers associated with arthritis drug Vioxx, causing millions of taxpayer dollars to be wasted. The suit alleges that Merck withheld …

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by Leslie Schulman

Three federal judges representing the United States District Court for the District of Columbia Monday appeared dubious during oral arguments in the case of Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Gonzales that the 2006 reauthorization of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act should be found unconstitutional. The plaintiff, a municipal …

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by Leslie Schulman

The German Federal Court of Justice said Monday it has dismissed an appeal made by writer Ernst Zundel to overturn his February conviction for denying the Holocaust. Earlier this year, Zundel was sentenced to five years in prison after the court found him guilty on 14 counts of incitement, …

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by Jeannie Shawl

US President George W. Bush Monday nominated retired federal judge Michael B. Mukasey to serve as the next attorney general of the United States. Mukasey, 66, retired from the US District Court for the Southern District of New York in 2006 after 18 years - the last six of them as chief …

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by Katerina Ossenova

The Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh Monday announced the creation of a $1.25 million fund to settle 32 lawsuits alleging abuse or injury by priests. Even though Pennsylvania's statute of limitations barred many victims from filing personal injury claims, the diocese has created the fund and will also offer a program of counseling and healing.Other dioceses across the …

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by Katerina Ossenova

China has increased its efforts to stop illegal land transfers and punish government officials responsible for illegal land title transfers, an official from the Law Enforcement and Supervision Bureau under the Ministry of Land and Natural Resources said Monday. While property in China is essentially state-owned, land use titles convey their holders a form …

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by Jaime Jansen

The Egyptian government has banned an annual gathering of the Muslim Brotherhood as part of its crackdown on opposition to the Egyptian government, a Brotherhood official said Sunday. The Brotherhood gathers annually for a social celebration of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan; 1,500 people usually attend the event. This is the …

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by Katerina Ossenova

Central African Republic (CAR) government forces are responsible for hundreds of unlawful killings and the burning of thousands of civilian homes since mid-2005 in their counterinsurgency campaign, according to a new report from Human Rights Watch (HRW). The report, released Friday, alleges that since the beginning of the conflict, CAR …

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by Jaime Jansen

The Supreme Court of Pakistan began hearing petitions Monday by parties opposing the re-election of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf while he serves as chief of Pakistan's army. The court hearings came the same day that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) said that a change to election rules will facilitate Musharraf's …

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by Jaime Jansen

The European Court of First Instance on Monday upheld the European Commission's (EC) 2004 landmark anti-trust ruling against Microsoft's appeal of the $613 million fine and order for Microsoft to share its communications code with competitors. The court agreed with the EC's ruling that Microsoft abused its …

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