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Legal news from Wednesday, April 20, 2016
by Alexandra Farone

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit on Wednesday upheld the convictions of five former employees of Bernard L Madoff Investment Securities firm who were convicted of various fraud charges in 2014. The three-judge panel rejected arguments that the conviction lacked sufficient evidence, and that aspects of the prosecution's closing argument …

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by Alexandra Farone

The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases Wednesday. In Birchfield v. North Dakota the court heard arguments on whether a state can criminalize a refusal to submit to a warrantless chemical test regarding blood alcohol content. This case arose when Birchfield was arrested for drunk …

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by Taylor Isaac

The Supreme Court on Wednesday unanimously upheld an Arizona commission's decisions regarding the redistricting of voting districts in the state. The claim from Republicans in the state was that the reapportionment of votes resulted in a discriminatory distribution favoring the Democratic Party. Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in the unanimous decision, "as the district court concluded, the …

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by Gwenyth Gamble Jarvi

Margrethe Vestagar, the Commissioner of Competition for the EU, on Wednesday opened a probe into the international business practices of Google concerning the tech giant's relationship with other Android developers. Vestagar stated that Google's practice of requiring mobile phone producers to pre-load Google applications on new devices could hinder innovation and might violate international antitrust …

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by Bradley McAllister

The US Supreme Court voted 8-0 to reverse and remand the case of Molina-Martinez v. US on the issue of whether courts reviewing sentencing guideline errors may apply a categorical "additional evidence" rule where a district court applies an incorrect range but sentences the defendant within the correct range. The court rejected the …

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by Gwenyth Gamble Jarvi

A judge for the US District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri on Tuesday approved a settlement agreement between the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and the city of Ferguson, Missouri. The suit had been filed by the DOJ against the city for alleged police injustice by US Attorney General Loretta …

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by Taylor Isaac

David Leyton, a prosecutor in Genesee County, Michigan, announced Wednesday that a Michigan judge will allow criminal charges against three people involved in the water crisis in Flint, including the man who supervised the treatment plan as well as two state environmental officials. In another development a federal court on Monday dismissed a class action …

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by Matthew Santiago

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has begun criminal investigations into US citizens connected to tax avoidance claims arising from the Panama Papers, media reported Tuesday. US Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara, well known for his prosecutions against financial fraud, sent a letter requesting the cooperation …

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by Bradley McAllister

The US Supreme Court ruled 6-2 Wednesday in Bank Markazi v Peterson that the enactment of a statute allowing terrorism victims' families to collect seized Iranian assets does not violate separation of powers, even if it directs a particular result in a single pending case. The US Congress enacted the Iran Threat Reduction …

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by Matthew Santiago

Apple agreed on Tuesday to pay $24.9 million to Dynamic Advances and parent company Marathon Patent Group to settle a 2012 patent lawsuit concerning Apple's voice-controlled interface, Siri. Four years before Siri was released to the public, the New York Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute filed a patent with Dynamic Advances for …

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by William Helbling

The US Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) on Tuesday released an order allowing the National Security Agency (NSA) to collect telephone records under the new intelligence law passed by congress last year. The order was formally issued on December 21 and only came to light when it was posted by the Office of …

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by William Helbling

The Hague District Court on Wednesday overturned a 2014 order from the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) that Russia pay USD $50 billion to former shareholders of the Yukos oil company. The previous award handed down by the PCA was the largest award handed down to compensate for unfair …

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by Justin Cosgrove

The US Supreme Court ruled unanimously Tuesday that state plans by Maryland and New Jersey impeded upon the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) authority under the Federal Power Act. The states were subsidizing their in-state energy companies to build new electricity capacity in return for the option for those companies to market …

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by Dominic Yobbi

The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled Tuesday in favor of a transgender Virginia high school student who sued his school for discrimination. Gavin Grimm, 16, of Gloucester County, Virginia, sued his school for not allowing him to use the boys bathroom. The school had decided on a policy that …

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by Justin Cosgrove

A panel of federal judges on Monday rejected a motion by Representative Corrine Brown challenging the current congressional district boundaries in Florida. Brown has long argued that the current boundary system violates federal voting laws by diminishing the rights of minorities. Brown also argued that her district now includes a dozen prisons, which alters …

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by Dominic Yobbi

The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases Tuesday. In US v. Bryant the court heard arguments to determine whether a conviction in an Indian tribal court without counsel used to satisfy the predicate offense requirement of 18 USC § 117, which criminalizes domestic assault when the …

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