U.S. Second Circuit - The FindLaw 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

August 2013 Archives

Tayfun Okatan, a U.S. citizen, was convicted of three counts related to trying to bring an illegal alien into the United States, from the Canada border. Okatan raised several issues on appeal, most of which the Second Circuit rejected in a separate summary order.

He did however, raise one successful issue: Whether his Fifth Amendment rights were violated when the government used his pre-arrest request for an attorney, and his refusal to answer questions without one, as substantive evidence of guilt. The Second Circuit found that his rights were violated, and vacated and remanded.

Though apartheid ended in 1994, the wounds are still deep. In what's been over a decade of litigation, South African nationals initiated a lawsuit in 2002 against American companies with subsidiaries in South Africa. The plaintiffs claimed that through their subsidiaries, the American companies aided and abetted the South African government in the violation of international laws by carrying out the apartheid regime.

Putting an end to this politically-fused litigation, the Second Circuit reiterated the Supreme Court's latest holding, that the plaintiffs' claims were barred.

The Great Recession might be over, but the litigation is just beginning.

In what's likely to be a string of market meltdown cases, all tracing back to the infamous mortgage-backed securities which crippled the U.S. economy in 2008, the Second Circuit breathed new life into a Barclays case, reports Reuters.

The Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station ("Vermont Yankee") has been a source of controversy -- and litigation -- since 1978. In the latest court battle, Vermont Yankee brought suit against Vermont's Governor, Attorney General and members of the Vermont Public Services board making preemption and dormant commerce clause claims.

Last week, in a case that is sure to have nationwide ripples, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that "[s]tates cannot shut down nuclear power plants over safety worries, reports The New York Times.

NYC Stop-and-Frisk Ruling Leaves City Potentially Liable

New York City's stop-and-frisk practice is going to end up costing the city unless the decision reached by a federal district court on Monday is successfully appealed and overturned by the Second Circuit.

U.S. District Court Judge Shira A. Scheindlin ruled that despite its proposed benefits to public safety, the stop-and-frisk tactics taken up by the New York Police Department (NYPD) were simply a "policy of indirect racial profiling," reports The New York Times.

What does Floyd v. City of New York have to say about the viability of stop-and-frisk in NYC?

Marvel Comics has experienced a renaissance of sorts over the last few years, with comic book characters hitting the big screen and raking in millions. So who can blame the heirs of artist Jack Kirby, the man who drew "The Fantastic Four," "The Incredible Hulk," "The X-Men" and "Spider-Man," to want in on the action?

Well, you can't blame them for trying, but the Second Circuit didn't think their claims had any merit.

From 1958 to 1963, Jack Kirby was a freelance artist, with the vast majority of his works during this time published by Marvel. He worked closely with Stanley Lieber (aka Stan Lee) who assigned and oversaw his work. Kirby passed away in 1994, and in 2009, his four children served Marvel with copyright termination notices. Marvel countered with a suit seeking a declaration that the Kirby heirs didn't have any copyright rights to terminate.

Lawrence DiCristina hosted Texas Hold'em poker games, in the back room of his business, twice a week from December 2010 to May 2011. He was charged with, and found guilty of, violating the Illegal Gambling Business Act (IGBA), and conspiracy to conduct an illegal gaming business.

Although a jury found DiCristina guilty, the district court dismissed the indictment and acquitted DiCristina. On appeal, the Second Circuit reversed.

Ben & Jerry's has long been known for its playful ice cream flavor names. Names like Cherry Garcia, Phish Food and Late Night Snack all pay homage to pop culture (Jerry Garcia, the band Phish, and Jimmy Fallon, respectively). They've even had some racy names like Karamel Sutra, and who can forget Schweddy Balls?

But, when the tables were turned on Ben & Jerry's, they didn't like it one bit.