A regularly updated guide to random legal news that I find interesting -- and hope you will too. And links! Always links!


Saturday, March 22, 2003

Disbarred Lawyer Indicted on Grand Theft Counts

"A disbarred attorney who worked in South Gate despite having embezzlement and forgery convictions was indicted by the Los Angeles County Grand Jury on Friday for allegedly stealing money from four people," according to the LA Times (free registration required).

Thursday, March 20, 2003

US Anti-War Protests Flare, More Than 1,000 Arrests

I understand that there was some violence -- and more than 1,000 arrests -- in San Francisco today. I watched the demonstrations around SF's Federal Building for several hours on-and-off. Apparently, the protestors managed to close the federal courts completely for the day.

I did not witness any violence, nor any arrests. The protestors I saw repeatedly blocked traffic, and the police would sometimes move them along, or sometimes not. Usually, the protestors would only block traffic for a few minutes at a time, and then let it flow -- causing an inconvenience, but probably not a great hardship. All told, I was impressed with the behavior of both the protestors and the police -- I thought both groups comported themselves reasonably. Apparently, a few of the protestors decided to express themselves by vomiting, but I missed this too.

UPDATE: The SF public defender, the ACLU, and the National Lawyer's Guild are worried about a courthouse glut of protestors' arraignments, and are asking private attorneys "to donate their services to defend protesters charged with more serious violations," according to this.
BBC Blog on Iraqi War

The BBC has set up a blog for its correspondents, who are real-time blogging about the latest developments wherever they are. If you are away from CNN and want to know what's happening, check it out here. UPDATE: Here's an article linking to several other "warblogs" from Iraq.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Bumfight Filmmakers to Stand Trial

"Three filmmakers have been ordered to stand trial on charges they paid homeless men and women to beat each other up on camera, then sold videotapes of their fights over the Internet. A Superior Court judge on Monday ordered the defendants to stand trial in June on misdemeanor charges," it says here.
War Means Rights May Be Scaled Back, Says Justice Scalia

"The government has room to scale back individual rights during wartime without violating the Constitution, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said Tuesday. 'The Constitution just sets minimums,' Scalia said after a speech at John Carroll University in suburban Cleveland. 'Most of the rights that you enjoy go way beyond what the Constitution requires.'" Hmmm. More great news out of Washington, via the AP.
Government Safety Tips

Now that we're going to war, here are some important safety tips you can use in case of terrorist attack.
DA's Charges in Elizabeth Smart Kidnapping Case

The Salt Lake County District Attorney's chilling probable cause statement, detailing the charges against Smart's kidnappers (including sexual assault) is now online. (Thanks to TheSmokingGun.)
Closeted Gays in Calif. Town Investigated

"Newspaper in Bakersfield, Calif., Confronts Legend of Powerful, Closeted Gay Men." This bizarre AP story includes allegations of murders (including the murder of a DA) and decades of coverups and conspiracies.

Monday, March 17, 2003

Outlook Brightens for Action on Asbestos

"Business, labor and the bar all now acknowledge that there is an asbestos crisis, one that has clogged the courts, delayed compensation to seriously sick claimants and bankrupted companies . . . ." Now there is hope for Federal reform, according to The National Law Journal.
Dewey Ballantine's Hong Kong Office Closes With Controversy

"As Dewey Ballantine proceeds with plans to close its Hong Kong office by the end of the month, bitter feelings have surfaced over how the firm reached its decision to shutter the seven-lawyer office and the racially insensitive way the firm parodied that decision at a firmwide annual dinner," according to the New York Law Journal. UPDATE: The firm has issued a formal apology over the racist parody to all its attorneys and staff, according to this.

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Why America Scares the World

Newsweek's cover story explores why even the US's staunchest allies are turning against it.


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