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

July 2014 Archives

Statements About 'Fitting In' Raised an Inference of Discrimination

Frederick Abrams was a detective with the Connecticut Department of Public Safety who'd tried unsuccessfully since 1998 to join the Department's "Major Crimes Van." The Van unit is an elite squad of detectives that solve major cases; membership in the Van is considered prestigious.

After years of trying -- but failing -- to get into the Van, Abrams sued the Department, claiming that he was denied a job in the Van unit because of his race. Abrams is black.

Relevant here, the District Court for the District of Connecticut granted summary judgment for the Department on the employment discrimination claims. The Second Circuit, however, ruled earlier this month that Abrams' case could move forward.

Atheist Group's 'Cross at Ground Zero' Appeal Loses in 2nd Cir.

An atheist group has lost its appeal in the Second Circuit, where it sought to have "The Cross at Ground Zero" -- the well-known steel-beam cross from the World Trade Center wreckage in New York City -- removed from the September 11 museum.

"The Cross at Ground Zero" was a steel beam found among the debris of the World Trade Center after the 9/11 terrorist attacks that formed the shape of a Latin cross. It quickly became a rallying point.

After several years at the Ground Zero site, the cross was moved to a warehouse, where it remained with other artifacts from the site until it was moved to the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.

Two cases closely watched by the tech industry are making progress through the Second Circuit. In the first case, Apple's e-book litigation may be coming to an end with a proposed settlement awaiting court approval, while the criminal case against Ross William Ulbricht, the alleged founder of Silk Road, is moving forward.

And if that's not enough and you want to try your hand at the judiciary -- well there's a job opening for that. Read on for details.

Another one bites the dust. Earlier this year J.P. Morgan and the DOJ reached a $13 billion settlement, and yesterday U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the DOJ and Citigroup have reached a settlement regarding federal investigations of mortgage securities.

The $7 billion settlement is much more than the $363 million Citi initially offered, and a bit more than half of the $12 billion the DOJ countered with, reports The Wall Street Journal. Let's take a look at the settlement in more detail.

Just call it the case that keeps going, and going. And going. Over two decades strong, what started out as a case to protect the indigenous people of the Amazon basin in Ecuador from the destruction resulting from oil exploration, has devolved into a RICO battle that will test the limits and applicability of the civil provisions of the statute.

Steven Donziger, now in the battle for his reputation, is appealing a district court's ruling against him.

We've been meaning to cover this case for a few weeks now, but with breaking new developments related to the Central Park Five settlement, and the at long last release of the "drone strike" memo, we were distracted. But now, we can now take a look at one of the most important Second Circuit Fourth Amendment cases to be heard this year.

And the court didn't stop there. It also gave district courts some suggestions on dealing with jurors' use of social media and the importance of jury instructions.