Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Woman Removed From No Fly List Still Denied Visa

U.S. District Judge William Alsup ruled that Professor Rahinah Ibrahim must be stricken from all related terror-watch lists reports All Gov California bringing an end to her nine year fight.

However it turned out to be a bittersweet victory for Professor Ibrahim,  Judge Alsup then made a further ruling which let U.S. officials revoke her visa for secret reasons he would/could not disclose. 
Lawyers at Chaninat &Leeds specialize in US visas and immigration law including waiver and exclusion cases 
This order, of course, does not insist that the government grant a waiver,” Alsup wrote. “Once acted on, the agency's decision whether (or not) to grant a waiver would presumably be unreviewable” by the court.
 The US government has point blank refused, since the no-fly list was written after the September 11, 2001, attacks, to say who is on it, how they got there or how they can get off it.

Read the full report here 

Majority of Aliens In USA Deportation Case Now Have Attorneys

The National Journal has reported that the majority of defendants in immigration cases now have

The benefit of legal representation and in fact in 2013, 59% of those in immigration proceedings had legal representation.

The main type of case in 2013 were ones relating to deportation.

Thailand Attorneys Chaninat & Leeds are experts in US Immigration and Visa Law

However the overall number of immigration cases has declined, from 224,577 in 2009 to 173,018 in 2013. More immigrants having lawyers means that these immigration cases have become more complex and can take longer to resolve. That's contributed to a slowdown in the number of new deportation cases.

Read the full article here

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Judge Recommends US Should Change Constitution

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has just released his latest book, Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change the Constitution. He suggests amendments to the constitution would reduce gun violence, abolish the death penalty, restrict political campaign spending, and limit states' independence and reports USA Today.

Stevens also reflects on today's justices, the complex cases they face, and the issues likely to reach the court in the near future, from same-sex marriage to government surveillance.

Thailand Lawyers, Chaninat & Leeds are comprised of Thai, US and UK attorneys  

His ideas include:

·         Changing the Second Amendment to make clear that only a state's militia, not its citizens, has a constitutional right to bear arms.
·         Changing the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against "cruel and unusual punishments" by specifically including the death penalty.
·         Removing from First Amendment protection any "reasonable limits" on campaign spending enacted by Congress or the states.
·         Requiring that congressional and state legislative districts be "compact and composed of contiguous territory" to stop both parties from carving out safe seats.
·         Eliminating states' sovereign immunity from liability for violating the Constitution or an act of Congress, which he calls a "manifest injustice."
·         Allowing Congress to require states to perform federal duties in emergencies, in order to reduce "the risk of a national catastrophe.

Read more about the book here 
Federal agencies must reveal a memorandum that outlines the legal basis for assassinating Anwar al-Awlaki while the U.S. citizen was living Yemen, the 2nd Circuit unanimously ruled today according to Courthouse News.
Anwar al-Awlaki was living in Yemen when he was killed in a bomb. A separate strike killed his 16 year old son a week later.
Attorneys at Chaninat & Leeds law firm are experienced in Thailand Criminal Attorneys cases
An American Civil Liberties Union official called the decision a "resounding rejection of the government's effort to use secrecy and selective disclosure to manipulate public opinion about the targeted killing program."
The agencies also must provide information about why they refused to confirm or deny the existence of other documents.
Read the full report here

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Monday, April 21, 2014

Pets In France To Be “Living Beings”

Pets in France are no longer just “movable goods” as a result of a bill passed by the National Assembly. After 678,000 people signed an online petition, MPs decided to review the status of pets.
The new bill amends the civil code to describe animals as "living beings capable of feelings,” according to the International Business Times.

The IBT believe that the new law is expected to allow pet owners to claim damages for suffering when their animals are killed. 

Chaninat & Leeds Thailand Attorneys offer law advice on Thai domestic and international legal issues 

This should make it easier to prosecute cases of animal cruelty and help courts to decide who gets custody of cats or dogs when couples divorce. The change will bring the civil law into line with the penal code, which sets tough penalties for cruelty to animals.

Pets are legally considered to be property in England so that owners can press charges or claim compensation if they are stolen. 

Read the whole story here

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Cannabis Use in Thailand

Cannabis, also known as marijuana and ganja in Thailand is arguably the most controversial plant in history. Most government and police organizations, view it is a dangerous substance and its users are criminals. To others, the plant is considered to be anything from a fairly benign recreational substance to a miracle plant with a countless medicinal and industrial uses. 

Eric Blair writing for for thailawforum has published an engaging article on the history of cannabis in Thailand.

A little known fact is that Cannabis has historically been used in Southeast Asia as: an ingredient, a condiment in foods, a medicine, and a source of fiber. The most well known historical example of Cannabis being used as a spice in Thailand is the famous boat noodle soup, although using Cannabis as a coking ingredient has long since been outlawed in Thailand. 

 Despite Cannabis being illegal since 1937, many tourist and counter-culture hotspots of Thailand have a large drug tourism scene. Chaninat & Leeds criminal attorney, Phiriya Weerasawadi warns just because a destination is well-known for marijuana does not mean you won’t get arrested for using. The majority of drug arrest cases come from tourist areas such as Khao San Road and Koh Phangan”.

Read the full article here

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Chinese Tourists Behaving Badly In Thailand

NBC News reports that one of Thailand’s most respected universities is coming under siege from Chinese tourists thanks to a recently released Chinese movie, Lost in Thailand, a comedy film which was partially filmed on the Chiang Mai University campus. The film is believed to be China's highest-grossing homegrown movie ever.

Thousands of Chinese tourists have climbed aboard student buses at Chiang Mai University, caused chaos in cafeterias and slipped into classes to attend lectures. Chiang Mai University has now been forced to ban individual visitors, and construct a sign in prominent Chinese characters requesting that passports be produced.

Chaninat and Leeds a Bangkok law firm with a full staff of professional licensed attorneys and Thailand Investigators

Thai social media bemoaned the Chinese tourists for spitting, littering, cutting into lines, flouting traffic laws and allowing their children to relieve themselves in public pools. As a result of complaints by the tourist board in Thailand, the Chinese government has been forced to issue guidance on how their citizens should behave when visiting other countries.

Read the full story here

Related Article: Guide for Tourists to Laws in Thailand

Dad Who Buys Thai Prostitute For Son is Punished in Australian Court

A father in Australia has been convicted under a new law after hiring a prostitute for his 13 year old son during a family holiday to Thailand reports The CourierMail.

Thailand lawyers, Chaninat & Leeds assist Thai and foreigners with Thailand criminal law matters

The court received evidence the man, his wife and their son traveled to Koh Samui for a friend's wedding in September 2012. After getting drunk at a bachelor party, the father arranged for a prostitute to take his son’s virginity. When the son returned to Australia, he told his mother about his sexual initiation in Thailand. The mother then reported her, now estranged, husband to the police.  

The father was sentenced to 12 month’s imprisonment but released on a $2000 two year good release bond. The Court heard how he was  also being treated for depression.  The wife has filed for divorce.

Read more here

Flickr photo credit: Blemished Paradise

Related Articles:Guide for Tourists to Laws in ThailandSex Laws in ThailandUS Immigration and Thai Sex WorkersDefining Child Trafficking & Child Prostitution: The Case of Thailand

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

TSA To Search Public Transportation Without Warrants

The LA Times has reported that the MBTA transit police have declared that all public transport users will be stopped and searched at “Transit Watch” checkpoints and that anyone declining a search will be ordered to leave the station.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) are now increasingly conducting searches and screenings at train stations, subways, ferry terminals and other mass transit locations around the US.

Chaninat & Leeds are specialist attorneys in Thailand Criminal Law

We are not the Airport Security Administration,” TSA air marshal Ray Dineen said to the L.A. Times. “We take that transportation part seriously.” However, in response, Fred H. Cate, a professor at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, who writes on privacy and security says "It's a great way to make the public think you are doing something. It's a little like saying, 'If we start throwing things up in the air, will they hit terrorists?' ''

The move comes at a time when the American government is actively encouraging its citizens to use public transport rather than personal vehicles, a move that is being copied by governments around the world: for example Hamburg, Germany is planning on banning cars in its city center over the next coming years.

Read the full article here

Watch this video by the State Bay Examiner:

Study Of The US Sex Industry

A new study entitled "Estimating the Size and Structure of the Underground Commercial Sex Economy in Eight Major US Cities" investigated the sex trade in eight big American cities has been published. A detailed investigation into the industry in Miami, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Denver, Kansas City, San Diego, and Seattle found that Hispanic prostitutes and pimps are a growing part of the sex trade. 

Aside from brothels, the human sex trade in large American cities also includes internet-based trafficking and erotic massage parlors in addition to street-based prostitution. Street-based prostitution, which has the lowest prices, was found to be in decline as girls increasingly ply their trade in strip clubs and massage parlors or the internet, which are all safer compared to the streets. 

However, the study also found that the overall national demand for sex work has decreased, and that prostitution is no longer so common and as well paid.

Prostitution under Thailand criminal law is illegal – section 286 of the Penal Code states: “Any person, being over sixteen years of age, subsists on the earning of a prostitute, even if it is some part of her incomes, shall be punished with imprisonment of seven to twenty years and fined of fourteen thousand to forty thousand Baht, or imprisonment for life.” 

Read the full study here

Related Documents: Sex Laws in Thailand 

Related Articles: US Immigration and Thai Sex Workers

Flickr photo credit: Blemished Paradise

Birth Certificate And Student Dormitory Legal Battles For Transgender

The Huffington Post reports that George Fox University, in Newberg, Oregon has stopped a transgender sophomore student from living in an all male dorm because of their “theological commitments” as a Christian school.

However, the student has now decided to file a federal complaint against the university. The school however have rejected his claim for discrimination and have released a statement saying "The university has made many efforts to provide support and accommodation for the student and remains committed to his academic, physical, emotional and spiritual welfare."

Chaninat & Leeds Attorneys are a Bangkok based US immigration law firm specializing in US Immigration Law in Thailand 

This story comes as The Star reports that a family in Canada has filedhuman rights complaint arguing their son should be allowed to change or remove the “sex” from his birth certificate. She has lived life as a girl from a young age, and is indeed now only six. Her mother said says Renn needed her birth certificate last year to register for kindergarten in Saskatoon and was embarrassed when she saw that she was listed as a boy.

In the 1970s, most provinces changed their laws so people could change their birth certificates after sex reassignment surgery. The revision left out transgender children, because people must be at least 18 to be eligible for the surgery.

Read the two stories here and here

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Judge Reprimands US Law Firm In Missing Malaysia Airplane Case

Reuters reports that an Illinois judge has dismissed a U.S. law firm's motion to acquire evidence of design and manufacturing defects from Boeing and Malaysian Airlines in connection with the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 three weeks ago.

Cook County Judge Kathy Flanagan threatened to impose sanctions against Ribbeck Law firm if they file future motions without a legal basis.

According to Joe Leeds, a US Attorney in Thailand , the decision of the Illinois Judge was likely based on lack of standing and lack of jurisdiction. “Before filing a motion to procure evidence, you must have standing before the Court. This means that there needs to be an official complaint filed and accepted by the Court before a litigant can file motions for evidence. For the Court to accept a complaint, the Plaintiff must establish that the Court is the appropriate jurisdiction or location where the complaint should logically filed.  Apparently, no court complaint has yet been filed, nor has the Illinois Court accepted jurisdiction in the case.” states Leeds 

Read the full article here

Creative commons photo credit: planegeezer