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Category Archives: Courts

Mueller team includes 17 seasoned federal prosecutors

“Special counsel Robert Mueller has not publicly uttered a single word about the direction of his high-stakes Russia probe. But the way he’s assigned the 17 federal prosecutors on his team — pieced together by POLITICO from court filings and interviews with lawyers familiar with the Russia cases gives insight into how he’s conducting the investigation and what might be next. His most experienced attorneys have discrete targets, such as former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and current White House aides. Mueller’s longtime chief of staff is coordinating all the lawyers, including some who cover multiple topics. Select FBI special agents have been tapped to question witnesses…”

AP reports 91% of Trump court nominees are white – 81% are white males

AP:  “President Donald Trump is nominating white men to America’s federal courts at a rate not seen in nearly 30 years, threatening to reverse a slow transformation toward a judiciary that reflects the nation’s diversity. So far, 91 percent of Trump’s nominees are white, and 81 percent are male, an Associated Press analysis has found.… Continue Reading

NYT Trump Is Rapidly Reshaping the Judiciary

Trump Reshaping Courts at Fastest Pace in Five Decades – “Republican lawyers and lawmakers are working together to install conservative judges on the influential federal appeals courts at a clip not seen in decades…In the weeks before Donald J. Trump took office, lawyers joining his administration gathered at a law firm near the Capitol, where… Continue Reading

Problems and Solutions for Court Videoconferencing

Court Tech Bulletin: Problems and Solutions for Court Videoconferencing “A BuzzFeed News article brought to our attention a report done on the use of videoconferencing in the Courts of the United Kingdom and Wales.  We share some notes from the articles and discuss our potential technology solutions and other resources below. An article was posted… Continue Reading

US Court Grants ISPs and Search Engine Blockade of Sci-Hub

Torrent Freak: “Sci-Hub, often referred to as the “Pirate Bay of Science,” has suffered another blow in a US federal court. The American Chemical Society has won a default judgment of $4.8 million for alleged copyright infringement against the site. In addition, the publisher was granted an unprecedented injunction which requires search engines and ISPs… Continue Reading

Politico commentary – The Supreme Court Has An Ethics Problem

Politico Magazine -Elizabeth Warren: “A few days before the Supreme Court returned from its summer break, Justice Neil Gorsuch, the court’s newest member, attended a luncheon at the Trump International Hotel, where he was to give the keynote address. The location of the speech attracted the attention of dozens of protesters and a number of… Continue Reading

Immigration Court Filings Take Nose Dive, While Court Backlog Increases

“Preliminary figures based upon case-by-case court records as of the end of September 2017 indicate that the number of DHS issued NTAs (notices to appear) initiating proceedings in Immigration Court is substantially down since President Trump took office. This is surprising since ICE states that its apprehensions were up during this same period. There were… Continue Reading

From segregation to the Supreme Court: the life and work of Thurgood Marshall

“Marshall (2017) recounts one of the most contentious Supreme Court cases in American history, represented by Thurgood Marshall, who would later serve as the first African American Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. Directed by Reginald Hudlin, with Chadwick Boseman playing the title role, the film establishes Marshall’s greatest legal triumph, Brown v. Board of… Continue Reading

Judicial Conference Approves Courthouse Guidelines for Portable Communication Devices

“The Judicial Conference of the United States today approved…a guidance on portable communication devices (pdf) provides courts with information relating to use of these devices in the courthouse, including an overview of court policies and issues that courts should consider addressing in their local policies. Decisions about how these devices can be used are made on a… Continue Reading

ProPublica – Federal Judge Unseals NY Crime Lab’s Software for Analyzing DNA Evidence

ProPublica – We asked the judge to make the source code public after scientists and defense attorneys raised concerns that flaws in its design may have resulted in innocent people going to prison. “A federal judge [the week of October 20, 2017] unsealed the source code for a software program developed by New York City’s… Continue Reading

Commentary – The Supreme Court Is Allergic To Math

Oliver Roeder on FiveThirtyEight: “The Supreme Court does not compute. Or at least some of its members would rather not. The justices, the most powerful jurists in the land, seem to have a reluctance — even an allergy — to taking math and statistics seriously. For decades, the court has struggled with quantitative evidence of… Continue Reading

Signing Statements and Presidentializing Legislative History

Signing Statements and Presidentializing Legislative History. John M. de Figueiredo, Edward H. Stiglitz. NBER Working Paper No. 23951. Issued in October 2017. “Presidents often attach statements to the bills they sign into law, purporting to celebrate, construe, or object to provisions in the statute. Though long a feature of U.S. lawmaking, the President has avowedly… Continue Reading