Category Archives: Supreme Court

Supreme Court – The latest news about Supreme Court from the Lawstarz Blog – Latest news and coverage of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Legal medical marijuana passes Iowa Senate on 45-5 vote


A wide-ranging bill authorizing the use of medical marijuana for ailments from cancer to post-traumatic stress disorder was passed Monday night by the Iowa Senate, although it’s unlikely to win approval in the Iowa House.

DES MOINES — The Senate voted 45-5 Monday to approve an expanded medical marijuana law that would allow making and dispensing cannabis products in Iowa for adults to legally possess and use under a doctor’s care to treat an array of medical conditions, but under tight regulation.

“I think this is the right thing to do,” said Sen. Matt McCoy, D-Des Moines, who said many of the ill people who advocated for Senate File 506 have died waiting for the Legislature to act.

Senators passed “The Compassionate Use of Cannabis Act,” a new law that would replace Iowa’s existing but limited cannabis oil statute.

It lays out an expanded approach to reclassify marijuana and open it as a limited medical alternative under tight regulation and supervision. The bill now goes to the House, where its prospects are uncertain.

“Let’s do the right thing for the people out there who are suffering,” said Sen. Brad Zaun, R-Urbandale. The bill was supported by 25 Republicans 19 Democrats and one independent, while four Republicans and one Democrat opposed it.

Under provisions of SF 506, Iowa would license up to four manufacturers to “possess, cultivate, transport or supply medical cannabis” by July 2, 2018, so up to 12 licensed dispensaries could begin distribution to qualified adult Iowans by July 16, 2018. Interested makers and dispensers would pay a non-refundable $15,000 state fee.

 

Full Read – http://www.thegazette.com/subject/news/government/iowa-senate-advances-medical-cannabis-expansion-20170417

Supreme Court Sides with Goodyear Over Personal Injury Dispute


The Supreme Court handed down a unanimous decision today siding with Goodyear Tire & Rubber (GT) in a dispute regarding a $2.7 million payment the company and its lawyers were ordered to pay in a personal injury case, the AP reports.

An Arizona family injured in a 2003 motor home incident sued Goodyear after a tire failed on their motor home, causing it to flip off the road.

After settling the case in 2010, the family discovered the Goodyear hadn’t turned over key testing data.

The justices today sent the case back to a lower court to determine if  the family is entitled to the entire $2.7 million.

A federal judge said nearly all of the family’s attorney fees could be blamed on the misconduct. A federal appeals court agreed.

Read Full – https://www.thestreet.com/story/14090682/1/supreme-court-sides-with-goodyear-over-personal-injury-dispute.html

Court Ruling on Celebrity Photos Raises New Copyright Risk for Websites

Apr 10, 2017

When a gossip site posted a photo of a pregnant-looking Beyoncé, it probably didn’t anticipate the fallout: A major copyright decision that could imperil the site’s business model and undermine a legal defense used by other websites that depend on user content.

The decision, handed down Friday by a federal appeals court in California, came as a defeat for LiveJournal, which hosts the popular blog called “Oh No They Didn’t,” a forum for users to upload news about celebrities and chat about them.

The ruling came after a paparazzi operation called Mavrix, which the court describes as “specializing in candid photographs of celebrities in tropical locations,” sued Live Journal for copyright infringement over the Beyoncé photo and 19 other photos.

Full Read – http://fortune.com/2017/04/10/dmca-ruling-livejournal/

Is Legal Weed Hurting the Restaurant Industry?

Colorado’s restaurants are feeling the pinch

New York mafia family hit by wave of arrests

Ten members of a New York mafia family were arrested Tuesday on charges including attempted murder and extortion, prosecutors said, the latest blow against the area’s organized crime syndicates.

All of the suspects are believed to belong to the Bonanno family, one of five major Italian-American mob organizations in the northeastern United States – along with the Colombo, Gambino, Genovese and Lucchese families.

The charges stem from alleged crimes committed over a nearly 20-year span, beginning in 1998. They centered in New York’s bayside Howard Beach neighborhood, close to the John F. Kennedy International Airport, and were the result of a long-term investigation that included wiretaps, cooperating witnesses and surveillance.

Ronald “Ronnie G.” Giallanzo, an acting captain in the Bonanno family, was the ringleader of a loansharking operation that, at one point, reached $3 million in “extortionate loans,” according to Bridget Rohde, acting federal prosecutor for the Eastern District of New York.

“Even while incarcerated, Giallanzo kept watch over his illicit loansharking book, directing his associates to commit acts of violence to ensure that the customers paid the exorbitant weekly interest rate,” a statement read.

Prosecutors gave an example of one customer who owed Giallanzo $250,000 and had been missing the required weekly interest payments. Giallanzo and an unnamed associated allegedly beat the man until he soiled himself, while screaming and demanding the money.

Another defendant, Evan “The Jew” Greenberg, had boasted about grabbing a delinquent customer by the ankles, and knocking the victim to the ground with his head hitting the concrete, prosecutors said.

The indictment unsealed Tuesday also accused Giallanzo of a plot to murder a person who had robbed his associates.

The dispute lasted months, and saw Giallanzo’s crew and their target trading gunfire on several occasions in the streets of Howard Beach.

The defendants were estimated to have earned more than $26 million from crimes including illegal gambling, robbery and extortion, prosecutors said.

Howard Beach is home to a large Italian-American community and is sometimes considered a stronghold of the New York mafia.

Last week, the 23-year-old namesake grandson of New York mobster John Gotti was arrested and charged with violent crimes, including a bank holdup. Six others were also indicted and arrested in the mafia crackdown.

And in August, authorities arrested 46 alleged mobsters up and down the US East Coast, accusing them of orchestrating a vast criminal enterprise that stretched from Massachusetts to Florida.