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.
Subscribe to JURIST Legal News feed
The Missouri House of Representatives [official website] approved a bill [bill text] on Tuesday that would ban abortions occurring 20 weeks after fertilization. House Bill 1266, known as the "Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act," was sponsored by Republican House Member Donna Lichtenegger [official profile]. The legislation includes language defining the pain capable gestational age as 22 weeks following a woman's last menstrual period, which the bill equates to 20 weeks following fertilization. The act also includes a provision requiring...
New Zealand's parliament on Tuesday approved legislation[text] to allow people who were previously convicted of homosexual offenses to have their criminal records wiped. The bill "seeks to reduce prejudice, stigma, and all other negative effects" that would come from a prior conviction for a homosexual offense. Homosexual conduct between consenting males over the age of 16 was not decriminalized until 1986. Those who have been convicted of homosexual conduct previously still carry that conviction on their record even though it...
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [advocacy website] filed a lawsuit [complaint] in the Superior Court of California - Orange County Wednesday seeking declaratory and injunctive relief against the Orange County District Attorney (OCDA) and Orange County Sheriff (OCSD) [official websites] for operating secret jailhouse informant programs allegedly in violation of the US Constitution, California Constitution and California state laws. The ACLU alleges that the "OCDA does not disclose anything about the Informant Program to the criminal defendants or their...
UN human rights experts on Wednesday urged France [press release] to provide adequate emergency shelter, access to drinking water and sanitation facilities, to thousands of migrants living in camps on the northern French coast. "Migrants, regardless of their status," the experts stated, "are entitled to human rights without discrimination, including access to adequate housing, education, healthcare, water and sanitation as well as access to justice and remedies. By depriving them of their rights or making access increasingly difficult, France is...
At the conclusion of a 10-day visit to Thailand, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights [official website] issued a statement [official website] Wednesday saluting progress by the Thai government but urging improvements in some areas. The group's goal is to help implement the UN's Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights [text]. During the visit in five Thai cities, the group met with government officials, business sector representatives, civil society groups, activists and workers. Following widespread condemnation...
[JURIST] New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman [official website] is leading a group of 17 states and seven cities in a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] filed on Tuesday against the Census Beureau and Commerce Department [official website] in an attempt to remove citizenship questions that have been added to the 2020 Census questionnaire. The last time the US Census contained questions regarding citizenship [NPR report] was in 1950. The Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] is claiming that the questions are...
In the first sentencing in the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Muller [official website] into Russian meddling, 33-year-old Dutch attorney Alex van der Zwaan was sentenced Tuesday to 30 days in prison and a $200,000 fine, followed by two months of supervised release. Van der Zwaan pleaded guilty [text, PDF] in February after being indicted [order, PDF] on charges of lying [JURIST report] to special counsel prosecutors and the FBI regarding his communications with former Trump advisor Rick Gates in...
The Schleswig-Holstein Higher Regional Court [official website, in German] in Germany confirmed [press release, in German] Tuesday that an application has been filed by prosecutors in Germany to extradite the deposed Catalonia president Carles Puigdemont [BBC profile]. A three-judge senate for criminal matters of the court is now entrusted with the responsibility to determine whether extradition of Puigdemont is warranted under the circumstances. The applicable law in this context is § 15 of Gesetzes über die Internationale Rechtshilfe in Strafsachen...
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday he is cancelling Monday's relocation agreement [JURIST] with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). The agreement followed harsh criticism Israel received after the government approved [Al Jazeera report] a plan that would require asylum seekers to choose between imprisonment or deportation to Rwanda or Uganda. The agreement presented by the UNHCR was an alternative solution to Israel's migrant issue. The organization agreed to aid in the relocation of 16,250 migrants to various Western countries...
Elected officials from 10 Florida cities, led by Weston Mayor Daniel Stermer [official profile], filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] in Florida state court Monday against Governor Rick Scott, Attorney General Pamela Jo Bondi [official profiles] and other Florida officials challenging a state law that imposes penalties whenever a municipality or its officials are found to impinge on the state legislature's purportedly exclusive occupation of firearm regulation. The statute in question is the Joe Carlucci Uniform Firearms Act [statute], which was...
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] against the state of California Monday seeking an injunction against a state law [materials, text] that prohibits the sale of federal land. The complaint, filed in the US District Court for the Eastern District Court of California, also names California Governor Jerry Brown and the California State Land Commission [official websites] as parties to the lawsuit. The complaint argues that the state law, Senate Bill 50 (SB 50), passed...
The California Supreme Court [official website] held [opinion, PDF] Monday that Proposition 69, otherwise known as the DNA Fingerprint, Unsolved Crime and Innocence Protection Act (DNA Act), which authorizes and requires law enforcement officials to collect DNA samples and fingerprints from all persons who are arrested for and/or convicted of felony offenses, is reasonable and valid under the state's constitution. The case concerned Mark Buza, who was arrested for arson and related felonies and transported to jail. At booking, Buza...
Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency [official website] on Monday announced [press release] the agency's intent to revise greenhouse gas emissions standards for cars and light trucks. The emissions standards will affect vehicles with model years of 2022-2025. Pruitt criticized the Obama Administration's emissions standards, saying the former administration "made assumptions about the standards that didn't comport with reality, and set the standards too high." EPA plans to review a January 2017 final determination [text, PDF] issued by...
[JURIST] Nauru announced Monday it is cutting ties with the High Court of Australia [official website] and establishing its own Court of Appeals. On its Twitter page, the Republic of Nauru said [Twitter]: As a sovereign nation with a democratically (re)elected government, we will make decisions based on what is best for our people, not what ill-informed, racist, elitist, colonial-minded Australian lawyers, journalists & activists try & demand. ... We will not accept attempted interference in our domestic affairs.This is...
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] on Monday filed a motion [text, PDF] seeking permission to engage in settlement negotiations with defendants in the multi-district opioid case. The DOJ filed the motion setting forth its role in the case as a "friend of the court," which will allow the government to more efficiently assist the parties and the court in the lawsuit [docket]. In the same motion, the DOJ asked the court for permission to facilitate settlement discussions...
The Malaysian Parliament [official website] passed an Anti-Fake News bill [text, PDF] on Monday, outlawing fake news in an effort to prevent corruption. The law seeks to criminalize acts and publications that would deceive the public. Specifically, the : "[c]reating, offering, publishing, etc., fake news or publication containing fake news ... [p]roviding financial assistance for purposes of committing or facilitating commission of offence under section 4 ... [f]ailing to carry out duty to remove publication containing fake news." The bill...
The Israeli government reached a common understanding [press release] Monday with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to remove half of the African asylum seekers to Western countries. The UNHCR will facilitate the departure of 16,250 migrants from Israel to various Western countries, while Israel will relocate populations in a balanced manner with weight given to occupational guidance, vocational training and job matching. In January the UNHCR expressed concern [press release] over Israel's controversial law to forcibly relocate and indefinitely detain...
The International Criminal Court (ICC) announced [press release] Saturday that Mr Al Hassan was surrendered to the court's detention center in the Netherlands by Malian authorities. According to the arrest warrant [text, PDF, in French], he is accused of crimes against humanity in Timbuktu, Mali, as de-facto leader of the Islamic police force in 2012 and 2013. He allegedly took part in the destruction of the mausoleums of Muslim saints in Timbuktu. He also allegedly participated in forced marriages involving...
The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Monday that service advisors at car dealerships are excluded from federal overtime pay requirements. In a 5-4 decision, the court ruled that service advisors are exempt from overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) [text, PDF] overtime provision, which does not require overtime pay "to any salesman, partsman, or mechanic primarily engaged in selling or servicing automobiles." The court classified service advisors as salesman, stating that "a service advisor...
The US Supreme Court on Monday declined [order list, PDF] to hear an appeal in a dispute to determine whether a pole can be turned into a cross on public land in Michigan. More than 50 years ago, the "Dewey Hill Monument" was donated to Grand Haven, Michigan, as a memorial for those who served and died in the Vietnam War. The monument was placed on Dewey Hill, which Grand Haven owned, just off the Grand River. The monument has...

Pages