courts

Conspiracy Trial
6:32 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Closing Arguments End in Rowland Trial; Jury Begins Deliberation

Former Connecticut Governor John Rowland leaves the federal courthouse in New Haven with his wife, Patty. (File photo)
Credit Mark Pazniokas / The Connecticut Mirror

Closing arguments ended on Thursday afternoon in the federal criminal trial of former Connecticut Governor John Rowland, and now the case is in the hands of the jury.

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Conspiracy Trial
12:38 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Rowland Declines to Testify in His Own Defense as Trial Nears End

Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland outside the federal courthouse in New Haven.
Jeff Cohen WNPR

Former Connecticut Governor John Rowland has told the court that he will not testify in the federal criminal trial against him, and the defense has rested its case.

That happened Wednesday morning, but not before more heated argument. Prosecutors allege that Rowland took part in an off-the-books scheme to get paid for work on the 2012 congressional campaign of Republican Lisa Wilson-Foley. They say he did work on the campaign, but he was paid by Wilson-Foley’s husband, Brian Foley, and his nursing home company, Apple Rehab.

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Conspiracy Trial
3:00 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

John Rowland Got Paid, But For What Job?

Former Connecticut Governor John Rowland (file photo).
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

One of the main questions for the jury in the case of former Governor John Rowland is this: was his consulting contract with a nursing home business the real deal, or was it a “pretext” designed to funnel him money for work on a 2012 congressional campaign?

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Conspiracy Trial
8:52 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Prosecution Rests Its Case Against Rowland

Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland leaving the New Haven federal courthouse with his family.
Credit Mark Pazniokas / The Connecticut Mirror

The prosecution has rested its case in the federal campaign corruption trial of former Connecticut Governor John Rowland.

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Energy
8:35 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Conn. Supreme Court Backs Wind Energy Regulation

Originally published on Mon September 15, 2014 5:47 pm

The Connecticut Supreme Court has sided with a state agency regulating wind energy, rejecting a challenge by opponents of a wind power project.

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Transportation
8:07 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Metro-North Settles With Four Bridgeport Crash Victims

Metro-North Railroad crews rebuilt the tracks following a derailment in Bridgeport on May 17, 2013.
Credit Metropolitan Transportation Authority / Creative Commons

Four of 28 people who sued the Metro-North Railroad in federal court after being injured in a Bridgeport train crash last year have settled with the commuter railroad.

Lawyers in the case say the four passengers reached agreements with Metro-North on Friday and are the first plaintiffs in the lawsuit to settle. Terms weren't disclosed. Metro-North previously settled with several others injured in the crash who didn't go to court.

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State Supreme Court
9:27 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Conn. Court To Take Up Juvenile Sentencing

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 4:01 pm

Connecticut's Supreme Court has decided to take up three cases that could decide how the state handles the convictions of children who commit murder and other violent crimes.

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Conspiracy Trial
3:13 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

Brian Foley Says Rowland Did "Real Work" for His Business

Brian Foley outside the federal courthouse in New Haven on Monday.
Jeff Cohen WNPR

The attorney for former Governor John Rowland took aim at his chief accuser in court Tuesday morning, trying to establish the idea that Rowland was unaware of any scheme to hide payment for his campaign work.

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Insider Trading
11:18 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Mathew Martoma Sentenced to Nine Years in Prison

Mathew Martoma.
Credit Spencer Platt/Getty Images News / Thinkstock

Mathew Martoma, a former portfolio manager with Stamford-based SAC Capital Advisors, has been sentenced in New York to nine years in prison. He was convicted earlier this year of helping the firm earn more than $250 million illegally through insider trading.

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Conspiracy Trial
6:00 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Brian Foley Testifies He Hid Campaign Work By Rowland

Brian Foley outside the federal courthouse in New Haven.
Credit Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Brian Foley, the husband of a 2012 Republican congressional candidate, told jurors that he wanted to hire former Connecticut Governor John Rowland for campaign services, but the risk of hiring a convicted felon posed a big political hurdle.

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Conspiracy Trial
9:39 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Rowland's Aggressive Sales Pitch Under Scrutiny During Trial

Former Gov. John Rowland, center, exits federal court last week with his wife and daughters.
Credit Mark Pazniokas / The Connecticut Mirror

The fourth day of former Connecticut Governor John Rowland’s corruption trial gets underway on Monday in federal court in New Haven. 

Prosecutors charge that Rowland allegedly devised ways to work for two political campaigns by drafting sham contracts with businesses owned by the candidates to serve as cover. Rowland has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy, falsifying records, and other charges.

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Corruption
3:37 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell Found Guilty In Corruption Trial

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 4:48 pm

Updated at 3:38 p.m. ET

A federal jury in Richmond, Va., has found former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell guilty on 11 of 14 charges in his corruption trial. His wife, Maureen, was found guilty on nine of 14 charges, including obstruction of justice.

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Conspiracy Trial
8:16 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Trial Unfolds in New Haven for Former Connecticut Governor Rowland

Former Gov. John G. Rowland leaves federal court with his family and legal team
Jeff Cohen WNPR

The federal corruption trial of convicted felon and former Connecticut Governor John G. Rowland began in earnest Wednesday in New Haven.

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Conspiracy Trial
4:11 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Rowland Trial Gets Underway; May Hinge on Cryptic Email

Former Gov. John Rowland.
Credit WTIC

Former Governor John G. Rowland's federal conspiracy trial gets underway in New Haven on Wednesday. He's facing charges of violating federal campaign laws by allegedly hiding his role as a campaign consultant in a 2012 congressional race.

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Cities
3:31 am
Tue September 2, 2014

Detroit Bankruptcy Battle Begins In Federal Court

The murals by Diego Rivera and other works at the Detroit Institute of Arts would be safe from creditors under the plan before a bankruptcy judge Tuesday.
Carlos Osorio AP

Originally published on Tue September 2, 2014 10:04 am

Detroit's historic bankruptcy case is entering the home stretch. The crucial, final trial phase begins Tuesday in a Detroit courtroom.

The trial will decide the fate of a plan to wipe out billions of dollars in debt and help Detroit emerge from bankruptcy as a new, revitalized city.

This trial is a big deal, but don't expect anything with lots of courtroom drama. For one thing, it's federal bankruptcy court — and there's no jury.

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Texas
8:33 am
Sun August 31, 2014

Rick Perry's Legal Trouble: The Line Between Influence And Coercion

Texas Gov. Rick Perry talks to the media and supporters after he was booked on August 19 in Austin. Perry is charged with abuse of office and coercing a public official.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Sat August 30, 2014 12:33 pm

The day he was booked, Texas Gov. Rick Perry gave a big smile for his mug shot — which was then printed up on t-shirts to demonstrate just what a farce he thought the indictment was. In a press conference, the scorn dripped from Perry's voice as he took up the sword — defender, not of himself, but of the state's constitution.

"We don't settle political differences with indictments in this country," he said. "It is outrageous that some would use partisan political theatrics to rip away at the very fabric of our state's constitution."

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Governing
7:48 am
Sat August 30, 2014

Justice Department Supports Native Americans In Child Welfare Case

Chase Iron Eyes, an attorney with the Lakota People's Law Project, is calling for a turnaround of child welfare and foster care systems.
Kevin Cederstrom AP

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 8:40 pm

The Justice Department has weighed in on a class-action lawsuit in South Dakota pitting Native American tribes against state officials, and come down resoundingly in support of tribes.

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Polygamy
9:47 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Federal Judge Strikes Down Part Of Utah's Polygamy Ban

Kody Brown poses with his wives (from left) Janelle, Christine, Meri and Robyn in a promotional photo for TLC's reality TV show Sister Wives.
Bryant Livingston AP

Originally published on Thu August 28, 2014 10:03 am

A federal judge on Wednesday finalized a ruling that strikes down part of Utah's ban on polygamy.

The case is high profile partly because the suit was brought forth by the Brown family, the stars of the TLC show Sister Wives. It's also important because as it works its way through the appeals process, it has the potential to become a landmark.

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Fraud
10:53 am
Thu August 21, 2014

Bank Of America Reaches Record Settlement Over Mortgage Meltdown

Countrywide, acquired by the Charlotte, N.C.-based Bank of America in the wake of the 2008 financial collapse, accounts for most of the allegations of wrongdoing against BofA.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Thu August 21, 2014 3:33 pm

Bank of America Corp. has agreed to pay nearly $17 billion in a settlement with federal regulators over allegations that it misled investors into buying risky, mortgage-backed securities in the run-up to the 2008 financial meltdown.

The Department of Justice, which announced the $16.65 billion deal today, describes it as "the largest civil settlement with a single entity in history."

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Texas
6:23 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Gov. Perry Gets Booked At Texas Courthouse After Indictment

Texas Gov. Rick Perry arrives at the Blackwell Thurman Criminal Justice Center on Tuesday in Austin, Texas.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 7:03 pm

Texas Gov. Rick Perry went to a courthouse to be booked after being indicted by an Austin grand jury on Friday for alleged abuse of power.

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Alternatives to Incarceration
8:35 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Instead of Jail, Judges Take More Hands-On Role With Addicts in Connecticut

Support Court participant Rosa, left, with U.S. District Judge Vanessa Bryant.
Connecticut U.S. District Court

Support courts for defendants with substance abuse issues have existed for over two decades in many states, including Connecticut. They give people an opportunity to seek treatment to avoid the cycle of repeated incarceration. In recent years, federal courts have begun similar programs. 

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Wrongful Conviction
4:27 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Man Wrongfully Imprisoned for 21 Years Seeks Damages From Connecticut

Kenneth Ireland spent 21 years imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit.
Credit Connecticut Innocence Project

Kenneth Ireland was released in 2009 after DNA tests exonerated him for a crime he didn't commit. Now the state of Connecticut is holding hearings about how much to compensate him.

When police questioned 17-year-old Kenneth Ireland for the rape and murder of a Wallingford woman in 1986, he thought it all would pass. "I figured they would figure this out and that it would just go away," he said. "I just went on with my life. I joined the National Guard to get the grant for college. I had gotten a decent job for my age. I was heading down this path where I was constructing a life."

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Equitable Opportunity
9:54 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Landmark State Education Lawsuit Delayed

Credit State Education Resource Center

The Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding has agreed to delay the start of a landmark education lawsuit that challenges the way Connecticut funds its public schools. 

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Affordable Care Act
10:59 am
Tue July 22, 2014

U.S. Appeals Courts Issue Conflicting Decisions On Obamacare Subsidies

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 2:03 pm

A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday dealt a significant blow to the Affordable Care Act, when it threw out an IRS regulation that governs subsidies. But before the ink dried on that decision, another three-judge panel hearing a similar case issued a decision that was completely opposite.

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Boston Bombing
2:24 pm
Mon July 21, 2014

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's Friend Convicted For Impeding Bombing Inquiry

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 3:30 pm

Azamat Tazhayakov, a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who police say impeded their investigation of the 2013 attack, has been convicted on some of the charges against him and found not guilty of others.

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Sexual Assault
2:39 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

UConn Settles Sexual Assault Lawsuit

Attorney Gloria Allred, at center, with UConn graduate Kylie Angell at the podium, and other plaintiffs in the sexual assault federal lawsuit against UConn.
Lucy Nalpathanchil WNPR

The University of Connecticut has settled a federal lawsuit filed by five women who claimed the school responded to their sexual assault complaints with indifference. 

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California
6:52 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Federal Judge Declares Death Penalty Unconstitutional In California

California's death row at San Quentin State Prison is crowded, but the execution chamber has been idle since 2006
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 1:22 pm

A federal judge has ruled that California's use of the death penalty is dysfunctional and violates the constitutional prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.

U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney's ruling came in response to an appeal by Ernest Dewayne Jones, who was sentenced to death in Los Angeles in 1995 for the rape and killing of his girlfriend's mother three years earlier.

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Courts
2:56 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

UK Man Sentenced for Taliban Support

Babar Ahmad.
Credit BBC

A British citizen imprisoned in Connecticut for supporting terrorism was sentenced in federal court in New Haven today.

Babar Ahmad was given 12 and half years in prison, with credit for the ten years he’s already served.

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Courts
10:43 am
Mon July 14, 2014

British Citizens Imprisoned in Connecticut for Supporting Terrorism to Be Sentenced Soon

Babar Ahmad.
Credit BBC

Two British citizens imprisoned in Connecticut for supporting terrorism are to be sentenced in federal court in New Haven this week.

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Overtime Pay
2:59 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Berlin Limousine Firm Ordered to Pay $500,000 in Back Wages

Credit Anja Peternelj/iStock / Thinkstock

A Berlin limousine firm has been ordered to pay its drivers half a million dollars in back wages and damages, after it failed to pay overtime for several years.

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