Jose GarciaJose Garcia's Journal
Source: USA Today
WASHINGTON The Supreme Court ruled that a Catholic foster care agency in Philadelphia may turn away gay and lesbian couples as clients, a major victory for conservatives with the potential to shift the balance between LGBTQ rights and the First Amendment's protection of religious exercise.
In one of the most significant cases before a Supreme Court that has shifted to the right in recent years, the justices handed down the most high profile defeat to LGBTQ rights advocates since a 2018 decision absolved a Colorado baker of discrimination for refusing to create a custom wedding cake for a same-sex couple.
The catholic agency "seeks only an accommodation that will allow it to continue serving the children of Philadelphia in a manner consistent with its religious beliefs; it does not seek to impose those beliefs on anyone else," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for a unanimous court. "The refusal of Philadelphia to contract with CSS for the provision of foster care services unless it agrees to certify same-sex couples as foster parents cannot survive strict scrutiny, and violates the First Amendment."
Catholic Social Services said its religious views keep it from screening same-sex couples as foster parents. The agency, with a long history of placing foster children, said it shouldnt be blocked from its work because of those views. Philadelphia countered that all foster care agencies are required to not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.
Read more: https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.usatoday.com/amp/4155263001
WASHINGTON, June 17 (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday threw out a lawsuit accusing Cargill Inc and a Nestle SA (NESN.S) subsidiary of knowingly helping perpetuate slavery at Ivory Coast cocoa farms, but sidestepped a broader ruling on the permissibility of suits accusing American companies of human rights violations abroad.
The 8-1 ruling authored by Justice Clarence Thomas reversed a lower court decision that had allowed the lawsuit, brought on behalf of former child slaves from Mali who worked at the farms, filed against the companies in 2005 to proceed.
The court ruled the claim could not be brought under the Alien Tort Statute, which lets non-U.S. citizens seek damages in American courts in certain instances. The business community has long sought to limit corporate liability under this law.
The lawsuits targeted the U.S. subsidiary of Swiss-based Nestle, the world's biggest food producer, and commodities trader Cargill, one of the largest privately held U.S. companies.
Read more: https://www.reuters.com/business/us-supreme-court-rules-nestle-cargill-over-slavery-lawsuit-2021-06-17/
Source: NBC News
The Supreme Court ruled Monday that a revised federal law does not allow prison inmates to seek a reduction in their sentences for possessing small amounts of crack cocaine.
The court said the wording of one of the rare bipartisan achievements of the Trump administration, the First Step Act, which made sweeping changes to the criminal justice system, means that the law does not apply to low-level offenders, even though supporters said they intended it to do so.
Its decision was unanimous.
During the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980s, Congress passed a law providing that someone arrested for possessing a small amount of crack cocaine would receive the same sentence as someone who possessed 100 times that amount of powder cocaine.
Read more: https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/supreme-court-won-t-extend-reduced-charges-low-level-drug-n1270675
The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday limited the type of conduct that can be prosecuted under a federal computer fraud law, overturning a former Georgia police officer's conviction for misusing a government database to investigate whether a purported local stripper was an undercover cop.
The justices, in a 6-3 decision authored by conservative Justice Amy Coney Barrett, sided with former Cumming, Georgia police sergeant Nathan Van Buren in an appeal of his conviction under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, reversing a lower court ruling that had upheld a jury verdict against him.
The justices agreed that Van Buren could not be convicted for misusing the database to perform the investigation because the information had been available to him as part of his job. Van Buren was charged after a 2015 FBI sting operation.
"This provision covers those who obtain information from particular areas in the computer - such as files, folders or databases - to which their computer access does not extend. It does not cover those who, like Van Buren, have improper motives for obtaining information that is otherwise available to them," Barrett wrote in the ruling.
Read more: https://www.reuters.com/technology/us-supreme-court-limits-reach-federal-computer-fraud-law-2021-06-03/
Source: NBC News Los Angeles
A judge who previously cited First Amendment grounds in dismissing the Daily Mail as a defendant in former Rep. Katie Hill's revenge porn suit Wednesday awarded the publication its entire demand for more than $100,000 in attorneys' fees and costs.
The Daily Mail's website in October 2019 published nude photos of Hill taken by her former spouse, Kenneth Heslep, according to the former congresswoman's Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit, which was filed Dec. 22 and alleges state Civil Code violations and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yolanda Orozco eliminated the Daily Mail as a defendant on April 7, prompting the publication to file a motion to recover its costs in reaching that result. Finalizing a tentative ruling she issued Tuesday, the judge granted the Daily Mail $103,625 in attorneys' fees and $1,120 in costs.
While judges often award attorneys' fees amounts in amounts smaller than those requested, Orozco's ruling gives the Daily Mail the full total sought.
Read more: https://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/national-international/judge-awards-daily-mail-more-than-100000-in-attorneys-fees-in-katie-hill-case/2608612/?_osource=SocialFlowTwt_LABrand&&__twitter_impression=true
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