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Court Ruling

CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 13, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court decided Thursday that a San Diego restriction on carrying concealed guns in public for self defense infringes on citizens' 2nd Amendment rights. In a 2-1 ruling, a panel of the U.S. 9 th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned San Diego County permit requirements because the court said they denied responsible, law-abiding citizens the right to carry concealed handguns in public for self-defense. California generally prohibits carrying guns, whether loaded or not, in public locations.
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OPINION
January 30, 2014 | Meghan Daum
More than 15 years after fabricating some 42 articles for the New Republic, Rolling Stone and other magazines, Stephen Glass was back in the news this week. On Monday, the California Supreme Court ruled that Glass, 41, does not have the moral character "critical to the practice of law. " He has been trying for a decade to overcome that hurdle. He's certainly qualified otherwise. Glass graduated from Georgetown Law School in 2000, passed bar exams in New York and California, and has worked for years as a paralegal at a Beverly Hills firm.
WORLD
January 30, 2014 | By Tom Hundley
MANILA - The Philippines, no stranger to the culture wars over contraception and abortion, will soon learn whether a controversial new law that requires the government to subsidize birth control for the poor is constitutional. The Filipino Supreme Court's decision is expected in March, but could come earlier. The new law makes no mention of abortion, which remains forbidden under almost all circumstances, but the Roman Catholic bishops of the Philippines have sought to frame it as such by arguing that any form of contraception other than church-approved “natural” methods or abstinence is tantamount to abortion.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 27, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - A former journalist who fabricated magazine articles lost a years-long bid to become a lawyer Monday in a court ruling that faulted his character and a failure to atone for his prior misconduct. In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court said Stephen R. Glass must be denied a law license not only because he deceived readers and editors as a journalist but because he failed to be completely candid in later years about his transgressions. Glass' deceit was "motivated by professional ambition, betrayed a vicious, mean spirit and a complete lack of compassion for others, along with arrogance and prejudice against various ethnic groups," the court said in an unsigned ruling.
NATIONAL
January 23, 2014 | By John M. Glionna
A jury in Phoenix on Thursday convicted a man charged in the 1991 killings of nine people, including six Buddhist monks, bringing an end to a bizarre decades-long case that involved multiple trials and evidence of overzealous police interview tactics. Johnathan A. Doody sat impassively in Maricopa County Superior Court as a clerk read guilty verdicts in a robbery gone bad nearly a quarter-century ago: nine counts of first-degree murder, nine counts of armed robbery and single counts of burglary and conspiracy to commit armed robbery.
NATIONAL
January 10, 2014 | By Timothy M. Phelps
WASHINGTON - In the three weeks since a federal judge told Utah gays they had a constitutional right to marry, the issue of whether such a right exists in the state has pingponged from a federal appeals court to the U.S. Supreme Court, the state attorney general, the governor and, Friday, the U.S. attorney general. Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. announced that the federal government would recognize the more than 1,300 same-sex marriages that took place in Utah during the past three weeks, meaning those couples will be able to file joint federal tax returns and be eligible for hundreds of other legal rights and obligations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2014 | By Abby Sewell
A panel of California appeals court judges found Friday that state law trumps Orange County's regulations on sex offenders that ban them from parks and beaches. The decision by the 4th District Court of Appeal reverses the conviction of Hugo Godinez, a registered sex offender who was convicted of a misdemeanor for violating the county ordinance after he went to a company picnic at Mile Square Regional Park in Fountain Valley in 2011. Godinez had been convicted of misdemeanor sexual battery in 2010.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 2, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - A Mexican immigrant without a green card on Thursday won the right to practice law in California, an unprecedented ruling that will permit others in similar circumstances to become lawyers. The state Supreme Court agreed unanimously that Sergio C. Garcia - who passed the bar examination four years ago - should receive a law license while awaiting federal approval of his green card application. The court, which has the final word on licensing lawyers, said it was able to approve Garcia's admission to the State Bar because the Legislature had passed a law last year that cleared the way. "The fact that an undocumented immigrant's presence in this country violates federal statutes is not itself a sufficient or persuasive basis for denying undocumented immigrants, as a class, admission to the State Bar," Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote for the court.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 2, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO -- The California Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday that a Mexican immigrant without a green card may be licensed as a lawyer, though his employment prospects will be limited. In an opinion by Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, the state's high court said a law passed late last year by the Legislature enabled the court to admit Sergio C. Garcia, 36, to the legal profession. The Legislature passed the law after the court indicated in a hearing in September that it was bound by federal restrictions to deny Garcia a license.
NATIONAL
December 24, 2013 | By Saba Hamedy
Determined to reinstate its anti-gay marriage law, Utah officials said Tuesday they would appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court "as soon as possible" after an appellate court refused to grant an emergency stay of a lower court ruling.  U.S. District Judge Richard Shelby invalidated Utah's law last week and refused to suspend his decision. On Tuesday, the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the state's plea for an emergency stay. A spokesman for the Utah attorney general's office told the Los Angeles Times that his office is disappointed.
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