Archive for September, 2010

New Jersey officials are dealing with a tragic suicide of a freshman from Rutgers University after Tyler Clementi was allegedly filmed illegally in a sexual encounter by fellow freshman students Dharun Ravi, 18, and Molly Wei, 18. In an example of the merging of tort and criminal law, the two students have been criminally charged with invasion of privacy.
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There is an interesting ruling out of Canada where Justice Susan Himel of Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice has struck down Canada’s prostitution laws as violating the basic rights of prostitutes and their clients. It is a position that many libertarians and some civil liberties advocates have long advocated — objecting to the criminalizing of such agreements between consenting adults absent some injury to a third-party or cognizable crime.
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In Chicago, police and prosecutors are dealing with a shooting in an unexpected way. Margaret Matthews, 68, had long complained about a 12-year-old who has been “terrorizing” her. When the boy joined friends in throwing bricks through her windows, she shot him. Police, however, did not charge her — instead charging the boy.
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University of Chicago Professor Todd Henderson has found himself in the curious position of being the focus of a national debate over tax rates — and his family’s finances. The corporate law professor wanted to show that people making more than $250,000 a year are not super rich and indeed can be struggling in this economy like other families. The response to this argument on his blog was fast and furious — leading Henderson to shutdown his blog and decline further commentary.
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A former partner with the California law firm of Bisnar Chase is suing the firm for sexual harassment and breach of contract. Stephen Eggleston claims that he was forced out of the firm after he refused to attend an office retreat where male attorneys were expected to strip naked and engage in an exercise with a Phallus.
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While there are hundreds of thousands of probate cases each year in the United States, the Supreme Court has decided to take up the case of Anna Nicole Smith for the second time to determine if her estate should get part of the fortune from her late Texas oil baron husband.
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The Iranian courts have produced their weekly outrage. The leading blogger in Iran, Hossein Derakhshan, 35, was sentenced to 19 1/2 years in prison for his writings. Derakhshan was the founder of one of the first Farsi-language blogs and helped instruct others in how to create their own blogs. The authoritarian regime views such blogs as a threat to its control over the population.
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