JURIST Legal News

JURIST's legal news service, powered by a team of over 40 law student reporters and editors led by Professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
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[JURIST] Attorneys general from 21 states and the District of Columbia filed a Protective Petition for Review [text, PDF] in the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website] on Tuesday asking the court to review the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) [official website] decision to rescind net neutrality laws [JURIST report] that prohibited internet service providers (ISPs) from deliberately blocking or slowing down websites or internet content or charging for preferential treatment. The attorneys general are...
[JURIST] The US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] announced Tuesday that it plans to seek Supreme Court review [press release] of a trial court's decision to block the rescinding of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) [official website] program, which gives undocumented immigrants brought into the US as children, known as "Dreamers," protection from deportation. The DOJ also filed a notice of appeal seeking review before the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Last week, Judge...
The EU General Court [official website] on Tuesday reinstated [decision, PDF] a four-year-old trademark infringement complaint filed by Starbucks [corporate website] against a Belgian coffeehouse whose musical-note signage is accused of infringing the iconic mermaid logo. Hasmik Nersesyan filed an application for registration of an EU trademark with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) [official website] in September 2013 pursuant to Council Regulation (EC) No 207/2009 [text, PDF]. Post publication of the trademark in the Community Trademarks Bulletin, Starbucks filed...
United Nations human rights experts asked [UN press release] Iran on Tuesday to stay the execution of an offender who was 15 years old when he was sentenced to death. Abolfazl Chezani Sharahi was convicted of murder and sentenced to death in 2014 after fatally stabbing a man in a fight. Article 91 of the 2013 Islamic Penal Code [text] says that a person under the age of 18 can be sentenced to capital punishment if they can understand the...
A coalition of human rights groups, including the Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK), Stop the War Coalition, the Campaign Against Arms Trade [advocacy websites] and Human Rights for Yemen, sent a letter to Prime Minister Theresa May [official website] on Tuesday urging her to cancel Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's visit to the UK. The letter [text, Red Pepper report] alleges that Salman, the second most senior member of the Saudi regime, has...
Supreme Court dismissed Texas Democratic Party v. Abbott [PDF] today, claiming want of jurisdiction. This dismissal may seem surprising, given that the Court has chosen to hear other gerrymandering cases this term. This past October the Supreme Court heard Gill v. Whitford, a redistricting action challenging a gerrymander claim in Wisconsin. In addition, two consolidated cases [JURIST report] have been added to the merits docket late last week. The second case, Abbott v. Perez, involves a claim under the Equal...
Here's the international legal news we covered this week: The Luxembourg Court of Cassation on Thursday reversed [judgment, in French] the conviction of "LuxLeaks" whistleblower Antoine Deltour who had leaked thousands of documents revealing tax breaks for major companies. [more] Eleven Guantánamo inmates filed a writ of habeus corpus [text, PDF] in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] on Thursday claiming that their indefinite detention is due toward President Donald Trump's anti-Muslim stance. The...
Here's the domestic legal news we covered this week: The US Supreme Court [official website] added 12 cases to its docket on Friday, including two Texas redistricting cases. The court had previously blocked [JURIST report] two lower court rulings that mandated the redrawing of Texas' congressional and state legislative [dockets] districts. [more] A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of Alabama on Wednesday dismissed [opinion PDF] a lawsuit challenging the state's voter ID law. [more] Eleven...
The US Supreme Court [official website] added 12 cases to its docket on Friday, including two Texas redistricting cases. The court had previously blocked [JURIST report] two lower court rulings that mandated the redrawing of Texas' congressional and state legislative [dockets] districts. The court has now added the cases, both called Abbott v. Perez, to its merits docket, consolidating them and allotting one hour for hour oral arguments. In South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc. [docket; cert. petition, PDF] the court...
Germany's highest federal court on Thursday overturned [press release, in German] a lower federal court's acquittal of seven men charged with violating Germany's ban [text, PDF, in German] on wearing uniforms in public that convey a political message. In November 2016, seven men were arrested while they "patrolled" the streets of downtown Wuppertal, purportedly attempting to enforce strict interpretations of Sharia law on residents. The men were wearing orange reflective vests displaying "Sharia Police" on their backs in an attempt...
The Luxembourg Court of Cassation on Thursday reversed [judgment, in French] the conviction of "LuxLeaks" whistleblower Antoine Deltour who had leaked thousands of documents revealing tax breaks for major companies. Deltour, an employee at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), disclosed tax agreements between PWC clients, many of them large multinational companies, and the Luxembourg Direct Tax Authority. He had received a six-month suspended sentence and a €1,500 fine in March. The first grounds of the appeal required the court to analyze Article 10...
The United States Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) [official website] on Thursday urged [report, PDF] Congress to take drastic actions to remedy the disparity in public school funding in minority and low-income communities. The report calls on "[f]ederal, state, and local government [to] develop incentives to promote communities that are not racially segregated and do not have concentrated poverty, which in turn would positively impact segregation and concentrated poverty in public schools and the educational challenges associated with such schools."...
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) [official website] on Thursday issued guidance [text, PDF; press release] that will allow states to require people to work as a condition to receiving Medicaid. CMS reasoned that health care is but one determinant of health, and that "a broad range of social, economic, and behavioral factors can have a major impact on an individual’s health and wellness, and a growing body of evidence suggests that targeting certain health determinants, including productive...
A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of Alabama on Wednesday dismissed [opinion PDF] a lawsuit challenging the state's voter ID law. Alabama's voter ID law [text, PDF] was passed in 2011 in an effort to combat potential voter fraud. The law requires Alabama residents to present a form of photo identification when they go to the polls to vote. Among the types of photo identification allowed under the law are IDs from colleges/universities, employers and...
Eleven Guantánamo inmates filed a writ of habeus corpus [text, PDF] in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] on Thursday claiming that their indefinite detention is due toward President Donald Trump's anti-Muslim stance. The inmates argue they can only be kept at Guantánamo if their individual circumstances show that they would return to the battlefield. However, the lawsuit claims that Trump's declaration that all Guantánamo inmates will remain in the prison does not take...
The US House of Representatives [official website] approved a bill [S 139 text, PDF] Thursday that extends Title VII of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. The bill was approved by a vote [vote record] of 256-164. Title VII allows the National Security Agency (NSA) [official website] to target foreign persons outside of the US for surveillance and intelligence gathering. Title VII was set to expire December 31, 2017. However, the current bill will extend the expiration date six...
[JURIST] The Kenosha Unified School District (KUSD) [official website] agreed [Kenosha News report] Tuesday to settle a lawsuit filed by a former transgender student who said the district discriminated against him by not allowing him to use the men's restroom at his high school. The lawsuit was originally filed [complaint, PDF] on behalf of the student, Ash Whitaker, by the Transgender Law Center [advocacy website] in July 2016. The lawsuit brought claims for alleged violations of the Title IX of...
A judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] on Wednesday denied a motion for preliminary injunction [text, PDF] brought by Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) [official website] Deputy Director Leandra English to remove Mick Mulvaney as interim director. Judge Kelly Timothy wrote in the 46-page decision that, "[t]he court finds that English is not likely to succeed on the merits of her claims, nor is she likely to suffer irreparable harm absent the injunctive...
Russian metal tycoon Oleg Deripaska filed suit [complaint, PDF] in New York state court Wednesday against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and associate Rick Gates alleging fraud. Related charges were brought in 2014 in the Cayman Islands. This new claim relies in part on evidence from the unsealed indictment [text, PDF] against Manafort stemming from Special Counsel Robert Muller's investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. Deripaska, through his company Surf Horizon Limited, gave $18.9 million...
EU Advocate General Melchior Wathelet advised [opinion, PDF] the European Court of Justice (ECJ) [official website] Thursday that the rights of same-sex spouses must be recognized by every member of the EU, even if a country's government has not authorized same-sex marriage. EU law [materials] permits the spouse of an EU citizen to obtain a residence permit for the EU member state where the spouse resides. But Romanian authorities refused to honor a request of a same-sex couple. The couple...

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