David's Feed
Feb 14, 2014

Comcast turns to Davis Polk for Time Warner Cable merger

WASHINGTON, Feb 14 (Reuters) – Comcast Corp will
again be working with its longtime antitrust counsel at Davis
Polk & Wardwell, as the communications and entertainment group
seeks to navigate the U.S. approval process to merge with rival
Time Warner Cable Inc.

Comcast has used the New York-based law firm repeatedly for
antitrust matters, most notably its successful bid to buy a
majority of NBC Universal from General Electric Co. A
team of Davis Polk lawyers helped win U.S. Justice Department
approval for that deal in January 2011.

Feb 14, 2014

U.S. to let banks do business with licensed pot shops

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration made it easier on Friday for banks to do business with licensed marijuana companies with less fear of prosecution, further encouraging U.S. states that are experimenting with legalization of the drug.

The Justice and Treasury departments were in the process of outlining the policy in writing to federal prosecutors and financial institutions. The guidance would stop short of promising immunity for banks, but make clear that criminal prosecution for money laundering and other crimes was unlikely if they met a series of conditions, officials said.

Feb 14, 2014

Comcast again turns to Davis Polk for Time Warner antitrust case

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) will again be working with its longtime antitrust counsel at Davis Polk & Wardwell, as the communications and entertainment group seeks to navigate the U.S. approval process to merge with rival Time Warner Cable Inc (TWC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Comcast has used the New York-based law firm repeatedly for antitrust matters, most notably its successful bid beginning in 2009 to buy a majority of NBC Universal from General Electric Co (GE.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz). A team of Davis Polk lawyers helped win U.S. Justice Department approval for that deal in January 2011.

Feb 12, 2014

U.S. states risk losing grants over rape in prisons

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration is moving to put into effect a 2003 law that was designed to eliminate rape in U.S. prisons, and it warned states on Wednesday that they may lose grant money this year if they do not cooperate.

By May 15, each state governor will be required to return a signed form certifying that his or her state is in full compliance with the effort or working toward compliance, according to a copy of a letter the U.S. Justice Department sent to governors.

Feb 11, 2014

U.S. can keep Guantanamo hunger strikers alive by force: court

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court declined on Tuesday to halt the forced feeding of hunger strikers in Guantanamo Bay but ruled that the prisoners have the right to sue over the procedure and other aspects of how the U.S. military treats them.

The 2-1 decision by a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed two decisions by lower court judges. Those judges ruled last year that Congress had stripped them of the ability to hear lawsuits about conditions at the U.S. Navy military prison in Cuba.

Feb 11, 2014

States should lift life bans on voting for ex-felons: Attorney General

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. states should repeal laws that restrict for life the voting rights of ex-felons because the laws prevent former prison inmates from successfully reentering society, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said on Tuesday in the latest Obama administration push on civil rights.

In a speech at Georgetown University Law Center, Holder said that former prisoners whose rights are restored are less likely to find themselves in court again. According to a preliminary 2011 study from Florida that he cited, the recidivism rate was 11 percent for ex-felons whose civil rights were restored there, compared to 33 percent for ex-felons overall.

Feb 10, 2014

U.S. attorney general Holder says he will stay on well into 2014

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder plans to stay in the Obama administration well into 2014 but declined in an interview with The New Yorker magazine to say precisely how long, according to a transcript issued by his office on Monday.

The chief U.S. law enforcement officer and a lightning rod for criticism by Republicans, Holder said there were still things he wanted to do such as pursuing financial fraud and easing mandatory minimum prison sentences.

Feb 9, 2014

U.S. Justice Department to expand rights of same-sex couples

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Attorney General Eric Holder plans widespread changes within the U.S. Justice Department to benefit same-sex married couples, such as recognizing a legal right for them not to testify against each other in civil and criminal cases.

The changes, being unveiled by Holder in a speech on Saturday in New York, are designed to keep pushing for gay rights in the United States after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year said the federal government cannot refuse to recognize same-sex marriages carried out in states that allow them.

Feb 8, 2014

Holder adopts spousal privilege for same-sex couples at U.S. Justice Dept

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Attorney General Eric Holder plans widespread changes within the U.S. Justice Department to benefit same-sex married couples, such as recognizing a legal right for them not to testify against each other in civil and criminal cases, according to excerpts of a speech on Saturday.

The changes are designed to keep pushing for gay rights in the United States after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year said the federal government cannot refuse to recognize same-sex marriages carried out in states that allow them.

Feb 7, 2014

Former U.S. analyst pleads guilty in leak to reporter

WASHINGTON, Feb 7 (Reuters) – A former U.S. State Department
analyst pleaded guilty on Friday to sharing secret information
about North Korea with a reporter for Fox News, becoming the
latest government employee convicted in a campaign against
unapproved leaks to the media.

Stephen Kim, 46, entered the plea in U.S. District Court to
avoid a trial scheduled for April. Under an agreement with
prosecutors, he admitted to the unauthorized disclosure of U.S.
national defense information but will not face a charge that he
lied about the leak to the FBI.