David's Feed
Sep 18, 2014

Pakistani woman embraced by Islamic State seeks to drop U.S. legal appeal

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A Pakistan-born neuroscientist has become a rallying cry for militant groups demanding her release from a U.S. prison. But in a little-noticed move she is trying to abandon her legal fight for freedom, saying the U.S. court system is unjust.

Islamic militants in Syria, Algeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan have made Aafia Siddiqui’s release a condition for freeing certain foreign hostages. Islamic State, for example, proposed swapping American journalist James Foley for her, but he was executed after their demands, which also included an end to U.S. airstrikes in Iraq, were not met.

Aug 21, 2014

U.S. government faces high bar charging cop in Ferguson death

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. government prosecutors investigating the fatal police shooting of a black teenager that sparked a Missouri city’s nights of rage face an uphill fight delivering the swift or sweeping results demanded by rights activists.

St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch expects a local grand jury investigating the killing to take evidence until mid-October, while a federal investigation may take longer and with results just as uncertain.

Jul 30, 2014

Lawyer-turned-witness ordered to prison for U.S. tax fraud

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A former partner at defunct law firm Jenkens & Gilchrist, whom prosecutors have called the most important cooperating witness in the largest criminal tax fraud case in U.S. history, was sentenced on Wednesday to six months in prison.

At a court hearing in New York, U.S. District Judge William Pauley also ordered Erwin Mayer, of suburban Chicago, to pay $220 million in restitution jointly with other co-conspirators for his part in the promotion of tax shelters the U.S. government said led to $1.63 billion in lost revenue.

Jul 29, 2014

Ex-Dominican anti-drug official pleads guilty to drug charges

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The former chief operating officer of the Dominican Republic’s main counter-drug agency pleaded guilty on Tuesday to U.S. charges that he conspired with drug traffickers to transport cocaine into the United States.

At a hearing in U.S. district court in Manhattan, Francisco Hiraldo Guerrero, 54, said he was part of the traffickers’ conspiracy. He said he had reached an agreement with prosecutors and was waiving his right to a trial.

Jul 22, 2014

Latest Obamacare legal knot won’t be easy to untangle

NEW YORK, July 22 (Reuters) – U.S. judges have their work
cut out for them untangling a legal knot created on Tuesday when
two federal appeals courts released conflicting rulings hours
apart going to the heart of the role the federal government will
play in Obamacare.

The latest conservative challenge to President Barack
Obama’s healthcare overhaul will not necessarily land in the
U.S. Supreme Court, although it could end up there as soon as
this year if the two lower courts go on disagreeing.

Jul 20, 2014

RJ Reynolds’ $23-billion punitive damage award unlikely to stand: experts

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A decision by a Florida jury to impose punitive damages of $23.6 billion against RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company on Friday is likely to be rejected on appeal or the award reduced substantially, lawyers with expertise in jury awards said on Sunday.

The award, which the cigarette maker has said it will contest, likely falls outside the boundaries for punitive damages that the U.S. Supreme Court has laid down in a series of cases, the lawyers told Reuters.

Jul 18, 2014

Worldwide legal claims could await Malaysia Airlines after jet downed

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Malaysia Airlines may need to convince judges from several countries that it was not negligent to send a plane over wartorn eastern Ukraine if the airline hopes to avoid an outsize legal exposure for the downing of Flight MH17, aviation lawyers said.

The lawyers told Reuters they expected at least some of the families of the 283 passengers on board the flight to sue Malaysia Airlines for damages above the amount they can already seek under an international agreement.

Jul 16, 2014

U.S. court revives BP retirement-plan lawsuit

By David Ingram

(Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday revived a lawsuit in which participants in four BP Plc employee retirement savings plans claimed they were deceived into buying and holding BP stock before and after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans said that a ruling last month from the U.S. Supreme Court upended the reasoning applied by a lower court that had dismissed the class action suit two years ago.

Jul 7, 2014

U.S. commission plans to look at size of price-fixing fines

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. government body that sets the recommended ranges for criminal fines and prison sentences is kicking off a process that could result in bigger fines for corporations that conspire to fix prices in violation of antitrust laws.

The U.S. Sentencing Commission, made up mostly of judges, said in a notice last month that it had identified price-fixing fines as a tentative priority area for study. The notice, which received little attention, was published June 2 in the Federal Register, a journal of U.S. government proceedings.

Jun 25, 2014

Nebraska lawyer aims to be trust-busting U.S. senator

By David Ingram

(Reuters) – A Nebraska lawyer is trying to breathe life into an old-fashioned antitrust movement with a campaign for the U.S. Senate based partly on breaking apart the country’s biggest banks and blocking consolidation among meatpackers.

In a throwback to an era when some politicians won by railing against big companies for strangling competition, Dave Domina secured the Democratic nomination in May and faces Republican Ben Sasse in the Nov. 4 election.