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A state appeal court on Friday threw out the first conviction obtained under a controversial court order that bars a Panorama City street gang from a wide range of otherwise legal activities, ruling that it was prosecuted in the wrong court.
April 15, 2014 | By Neela Banerjee
WASHINGTON - A federal appeals court Tuesday upheld the Environmental Protection Agency's first-ever limits on air toxics, including emissions of mercury, arsenic and acid gases, preserving a far-reaching rule the White House had touted as central to President Obama's environmental agenda. In a 2-1 decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit found that the rule regulating power plants "was substantively and procedurally valid," turning aside challenges brought by Republican-led states that had argued it was onerous and environmental groups that had contended it did not go far enough.
June 24, 1987 | JOHN SPANO, Times Staff Writer
"Sorry' and "unseemly" examples of the practice of law were condemned by state appellate justices Tuesday in two cases in which the lawyers overshadowed their clients. Both involved default judgments, or lawsuits that were concluded after one side failed to act quickly enough. Lawyers for the firm of Cummins & White were criticized and fined $1,200 by 4th Appellate District justices for pushing a case to default before the other side knew what was happening.
March 21, 2014 | By E. Scott Reckard
A Federal Reserve rule allowing banks to charge retailers 21 cents to process debit-card transactions has been upheld by a federal appeals panel, a blow to big merchants such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Target Corp. A lower court judge invalidated the fee cap in July, ruling that the Fed's formula included costs that weren't allowed under the Dodd-Frank regulatory reforms that Congress passed in the aftermath of the financial crisis. But in a ruling Friday for a three-judge panel, Judge David Tatel of the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington said the central bank's rules “generally rest on reasonable constructions of the statute.” GAS: See latest prices in Southland, nation Merchants, who had argued that they were entitled to a lower cap, expressed disappointment, while financial firms said they were relieved.
April 29, 1988 | PHILIP HAGER, Times Staff Writer
A state Court of Appeal ruled Thursday that, under the journalist's "shield law," a reporter cannot be forced to testify about unpublished portions of an interview with the defendant in a capital murder case. The case has drawn attention as a potentially pivotal test of a provision of the state Constitution adopted in 1980 that protects reporters from contempt for refusing to disclose confidential sources or unpublished information they obtain while gathering news.
October 11, 1986 | JOHN SPANO, Times Staff Writer
A state appellate court Friday declined to review Bruce W. Sumner's victory in the Democratic primary for Congress in the 40th District, upholding a judge who ruled that California courts lack authority to hear such contests to an election. Congress is the exclusive judge of whether a member has been properly elected and therefore qualifies to serve, justices of the 4th District Court of Appeal decided.
February 26, 1989 | JOHN SPANO, Times Staff Writer
A state appellate court has thrown out a key claim in a Costa Mesa woman's palimony lawsuit against Boston Red Sox star Wade Boggs, ruling that the jilted lover does not deserve payment for emotional distress. The split decision by the 4th District Court of Appeal leaves intact only Margo Adams' breach of contract allegations, which even if proved could justify only a small fraction of the $6 million in damages she first claimed against the baseball slugger.
August 8, 1987 | TED THACKREY JR., Times Staff Writer
The White House announced Friday that President Reagan will nominate Associate U.S. Atty. Gen. Stephen S. Trott to be a judge of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Trott, 47, a one-time chief deputy district attorney for Los Angeles County and U.S. attorney for the Central District of California, went to Washington in 1983 as head of the Justice Department's Criminal Division. Last year, he was promoted to associate attorney general, the third-ranking post in the department.
August 31, 1989 | ALAN ABRAHAMSON, Times Staff Writer
In a long-awaited ruling on religious liberty, a state appeal court in San Diego dismissed a claim that the Hare Krishna sect brainwashed a 15-year-old Orange County girl and cut by more than two-thirds a $9.7-million verdict against the group. In addition to the brainwashing claim, the 4th District Court of Appeal also dismissed claims that the Krishnas intentionally caused Robin George emotional distress and libeled her.
September 10, 1986 | BARRY M. HORSTMAN, Times Staff Writer
Superior Court Judge William L. Todd Jr., who presided over former San Diego Mayor Roger Hedgecock's felony trials last year, was nominated Tuesday to the 4th District Court of Appeal by Gov. George Deukmejian. The 56-year-old Todd, who has served on the Superior Court bench since 1974, is expected to assume the $93,272-a-year appellate court post here next month, after his confirmation by the state Commission on Judicial Appointments. Todd will replace Associate Justice Robert O.
March 20, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - Law enforcement in California may continue to collect DNA from people arrested for felonies - even if they are never formally charged - and store the genetic profiles in a criminal database, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday. An 11-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district court decision that refused to shut down the state's practice of swabbing individuals for DNA upon arrest. The 9th Circuit said California's practice was "clearly" constitutional under a Supreme Court decision last year that upheld a similar, but narrower, program in Maryland.
March 14, 2014 | By Bettina Boxall
A California appeals court has sided with landowners fighting the state over test drilling for a proposed water tunnel system in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. In a 2-1 decision, an appeals panel ruled Thursday that the state needed to go through the eminent domain process to gain access to private property on which it wanted to take soil samples and conduct environmental surveys. The testing is necessary for the design and construction of two 30-mile tunnels that the state proposes to build as part of a delta replumbing project.
March 13, 2014 | By Bettina Boxall
In a big win for a little fish, a federal appeals court Thursday upheld delta smelt protections that have cut deliveries of Northern California water to the Southland and the San Joaquin Valley. A panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded in a 2-1 decision that a number of environmental provisions that federal and state water contractors have disputed as ill-founded were in fact justified. In effect, the court backed pumping limits. Written by Judge Jay S. Bybee, a George W. Bush appointee, the opinion is a major blow to the agricultural and urban agencies that have spent years challenging endangered species protections that have curbed water exports from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
February 27, 2014 | By Maura Dolan, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
SAN FRANCISCO - A Northern California high school did not violate the constitutional rights of students when it ordered them to remove shirts emblazoned with the American flag during a celebration of Cinco De Mayo, a federal appeals court decided unanimously Thursday. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9 th Circuit Court of Appeals said administrators at Live Oak School in the Morgan Hill Unified School District had reason to fear that a potentially violent, race-related disturbance might occur during the school-sanctioned celebration of the Mexican holiday in 2010.
February 26, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - In a ruling that a dissenting judge called "unprecedented," a federal appeals court ordered Google Inc. on Wednesday to take down an anti-Muslim video that an actress said forced her to leave her home because of death threats. Google said it would appeal the ruling, but removed the video, "Innocence of Muslims," from YouTube and other platforms. The video has incited violent Muslim protests and has been banned by several Muslim countries. The 2 to 1 decision by the 9 t h U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the actress who appeared in the film never consented to being in it and her performance may be protected by copyright law. "While answering a casting call for a low-budget amateur film doesn't often lead to stardom, it also rarely turns an aspiring actress into the subject of a fatwa ," Chief Judge Alex Kozinski wrote for the majority.
February 20, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
Orange County has loosened requirements for carrying concealed weapons in public following a pro-gun ruling last week by a federal appeals court, officials said Thursday. A three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2 to 1 that California counties may no longer require residents who want to carry concealed firearms to demonstrate special, individualized needs for protection. The court majority said law-abiding residents have a 2nd Amendment right to bear a gun in public.
April 22, 1994 | DWAYNE BRAY
A state appeal court Wednesday overturned a Ventura County judge's decision and threw out a jury award of $186,000 to a Moorpark College art teacher who said he was libeled after being accused of sexual harassment. The 2nd District Court of Appeal in Ventura ruled unanimously that the jury in Kirk D. Aiken's lawsuit against colleague Pamela Zwehl-Burke had been given erroneous instructions on which to base its verdict.
May 5, 1988 | BARRY M. HORSTMAN, Times Staff Writer
Saying that "a prosecution fox was sequestered in the jury house," an attorney for former San Diego Mayor Roger Hedgecock on Wednesday once again asked the 4th District Court of Appeal to overturn Hedgecock's felony conviction because of jury-tampering allegations. In a 24-page brief that essentially represented an appeal of an appeal, Charles Sevilla addressed the admittedly difficult task of trying to persuade the appellate justices that they erred in their decision in the case last week.
February 15, 2014 | By Ralph Vartabedian
A California appeals court on Friday put on hold a potentially crippling legal order by a Superior Court judge against the California high-speed rail project and said it would hold a review of the matter. The lower court's decision had essentially prevented rail officials from issuing any bonds to pay for the project, forcing them to rely on federal grants just as they are preparing to start construction of a line that would eventually run from Los Angeles to San Francisco. The action by the 3rd District Court of Appeal does not reverse the lower court decision, but it could give rail officials some hope that they can escape a legal situation that could jeopardize the project.
February 14, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - A public elementary school decided in 2011 to require students to wear a uniform with the school's motto, "Tomorrow's Leaders," emblazoned in small letters on the shirts around a gopher, the campus mascot. One parent objected to the uniforms and eventually sued, contending they violated the 1st Amendment's guarantee of free speech. In a unanimous ruling Friday, a three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit largely agreed with her. The panel said the words "Tomorrow's Leaders" potentially violated students' right to free speech and the uniform policy must go unless the school district can justify it under a legal standard that is difficult to meet.
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