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Argentina's embattled Vice President was back in court Wednesday, this time over false data in documents for an old car that he bought about 20 years ago.

Amado Boudou appeared before a federal judge and presented a written statement instead of speaking in his defense. Boudou is accused of transferring a Honda CRX automobile to his name irregularly in 2003.

The judge is expected to decide in 10 days whether to charge Boudou or dismiss the case for lack of evidence.

In a separate case, the vice president was charged last month with bribery and conducting business incompatible with public office. He is accused of using shell companies and secret middlemen to gain control of a company that was given contracts to print Argentine currency as well as material for President Cristina Fernandez's election campaign.

Boudou is the first sitting Argentine vice president to face such charges. If convicted, he could be sentenced to between one and six years in prison and be banned for life from elective office.

The charges against the vice president come as Fernandez is struggling to curb double-digit inflation and court rulings in the United States that threaten to force Argentina into default on its debts.



A southwestern Kentucky community is stuck with an unused school at the moment after a judge issued an order stopping its sale for the moment.

But, the Graves County Board of Education has been allowed to remove some materials from Cuba Elementary School while the legal drama surrounding the facility plays out.

Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd issued an order Wednesday allowing the district to remove a variety of supplies and equipment from the vacant building.

The Paducah Sun reported that four Cuba area residents sued the school board, alleging it mishandled the process of closing the Cuba school earlier this year.

The school district planned to auction off the property near the Kentucky-Tennessee state line in June, but halted that sale after Shepherd's order.



Gov. Jerry Brown nominated a Mexican-born Stanford law professor on Tuesday to the California Supreme Court, continuing a trend to diversify and shift one of the most influential courts in the country to the left.

Brown nominated Mariano-Florentino Cuellar, 41, to be an associate justice of the state's highest court. If approved, the registered Democrat would fill a vacancy created by the retirement in January of conservative Justice Marvin Baxter.

"Tino Cuellar is a renowned scholar who has served two presidents and made significant contributions to both political science and the law," Brown said in a statement. "His vast knowledge and even temperament will — without question — add further luster to our highest court."

It's Brown's second nomination since returning to the governor's office. In 2011, he filled a vacancy by appointing University of California, Berkeley, law professor Goodwin Liu to the California Supreme Court after Senate Republicans blocked his nomination to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.



A Massachusetts teenager charged with killing his teacher last year after following her into a bathroom similarly followed a worker at a youth detention facility into a locker room last month before choking and beating her, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Philip Chism, 15, made sure he wasn't being watched, took off his footwear to muffle his footsteps, then crouched down as he made his way along a corridor before following the 29-year-old woman into the locker room at Metro Youth Services facility in Boston on June 2, prosecutor Mark Zanini told a judge in Boston Juvenile Court.

Chism, with a pencil in his hand, pushed the woman against the wall in the bathroom, choked her, and then hit her in the head with his fists, he said.

"The victim was trying to scream but it was ineffective because her airway was closed by virtue of the defendant's strangling her," Zanini said.

After getting Chism's hand off her neck, she screamed and other facility workers pulled Chism away from her, Zanini said.

She suffered injuries to her face, jaw, neck and back, and got a hole in the back of her shirt that was the same size as a pencil, which was found on the floor, Zanini said.

Chism was being held at the facility without bail after pleading not guilty to killing Danvers High School math teacher Colleen Ritzer in October. Chism, who was 14 at the time, had recently moved to Danvers from Clarksville, Tennessee. He has since been moved to a different detention facility.


Some Germans may soon be able to grow their own marijuana to relieve chronic pain after a ruling from a court in Cologne.

The Cologne administrative court ruled Tuesday in favor of three plaintiffs who had sued for the right to grow marijuana for therapeutic purposes, sending the cases back to the government agency responsible for approving medical marijuana products.

The court says the three demonstrated they could not combat their pain any other way and could not afford to purchase medical marijuana, which is permitted in Germany but not usually covered by the country's health insurance system.

The court also stipulated that allowing marijuana cultivation should depend upon a "thorough and individual" examination of each case, and rejected two other claims.


A dispute over a Montana wind farm's potential to harm nearby nesting eagles and other birds should be heard in California, the Montana Supreme Court said Friday, in an opinion that deals a legal setback to the project's developers.

The legal row over the Rim Rock wind farm near Cut Bank began last year, when San Diego Gas & Electric accused developer NaturEner of concealing the possibility that eagles and other birds could be harmed by the 126-turbine project.

NaturEner, whose parent company is based in Spain, filed a competing lawsuit in Montana. Its attorneys alleged SDG&E was trying to get out of an unfavorable contract and using the eagle issue as an excuse.

The Rim Rock wind farm is near an area with seven golden eagle nests and Montana's densest concentration of ferruginous hawks. Under federal law, a take permit is required for activities that could injure, kill or otherwise harm protected birds such as eagles.

SDG&E alleges federal officials recommended to NaturEner that the wind farm needed such a permit. NaturEner has denied the claim.

Montana District Judge Brenda Gilbert ruled in May that the case should be heard in Montana because of Rim Rock's importance to the economies of Glacier and Toole counties. She also issued an injunction requiring the utility to pay NaturEner nearly $2 million a month.

2 ag-gag laws facing federal court challenges

  Law Center  -   POSTED: 2014/07/19 00:01

The years-long fight between farm organizations and animal rights activists over laws prohibiting secretly filmed documentation of animal abuse is moving from state legislatures to federal courts as laws in Utah and Idaho face constitutional challenges.

Half of U.S. states have attempted to pass so-called ag-gag laws, but only seven have been successful. Among them are Idaho, where this year's law says unauthorized recording is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $5,000 fine, and Utah, whose 2012 law makes it a crime to provide false information to gain access to a farm. Both states now face separate but similarly worded lawsuits that say the measures violate federal statutes offering whistleblower protections and free-speech guarantees.

Farm organizations and livestock producers say ag-gag laws are aimed at protecting their homes and businesses from intruders, and some plan to use social media to assure the public they have nothing to hide. But animal rights groups, free-speech activists and investigative journalists want to throw out the laws because they say the secrecy puts consumers at higher risk of food safety problems and animals at higher risk of abuse.


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