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August 2010 Archives

Sigmund v. Starwood Urban Retail VI, LLC, No. 08-7137

Sigmund v. Starwood Urban Retail VI, LLC, No. 08-7137, involved an action against the owners of a parking garage where plaintiff was injured by a car bombing.  The court affirmed summary judgment for defendants, on the ground that the accidental victim of a car bomb that plaintiff's half-brother intended for their father could not recover from the third-party defendants he sued unless his half-brother's crime was foreseeable.

TNA Merchant Projs., Inc. v. FERC, No. 08-1201

TNA Merchant Projs., Inc. v. FERC, No. 08-1201, involved petitions for review of two orders of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), holding that the rate schedule petitioner proposed for supplying reactive power to the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) constituted a "changed rate" that was subject to the suspension and refund provisions of section 205(e) of the Federal Power Act (FPA), 16 U.S.C. section 824d(e).  The court granted the petitions on the ground that the Commission failed to respond to petitioner's argument that its rate could not be classified as "changed" since it was not previously filed.

Boardley v. US Dep't of the Interior, No. 09-5176, involved a challenge to National Park Service regulations making it unlawful to engage in expressive activities within any national park unless a park official first issues a permit authorizing the activity.  The court reversed the partial grant of defendant's motion for summary judgment, on the ground that the regulations in their current form were antithetical to the core First Amendment principle that restrictions on free speech in a public forum may be valid only if narrowly tailored.

Koretoff v. Vilsack, No. 09-5286, involved an Administrative Procedure Act challenge to a Department of Agriculture rule mandating that almonds produced in the U.S. be pasteurized or chemically treated to prevent salmonella outbreaks.  The court affirmed in part the dismissal of the action on the ground that the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act required certain plaintiffs to exhaust their administrative remedies with the Department of Agriculture.  However, the court reversed in part on the ground that the AMAA did not expressly bar producers' suits, and in light of the decisions of the Supreme Court and the D.C. Circuit, the AMAA did not implicitly bar the producers' claims.

US v. Proj. on Govt. Oversight, No. 08-5182, concerned an action charging a nonprofit and an Interior Department economist under 18 U.S.C. section 209(a), which prohibits giving or receiving any contribution to or supplementation of salary "as compensation for [an individual's] services as an officer or employee of the executive branch."  The court reversed in part judgment for plaintiff on the ground that a defendant's intent to give or receive compensation for government services is a required element of the offense.

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In US v. Baugham, No. 07-3145, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's sentence for various federal drug and conspiracy offenses, on the grounds that 1) defendant never asserted that a misstated name in the information caused him any hardship or confusion; 2) while the district court erred in neglecting the 18 U.S.C. section 851(b) colloquy, the error was harmless; and 3) the district court's reasoning did not exhibit vindictiveness.

Menominee Indian Tribe v. US, No. 09-5005, concerned a breach-of-contract action by a government contractor.  The court of appeals reversed the district court's dismissal of the action, on the grounds that 1) the limitations period in 41 U.S.C. section 605(a) was subject to equitable tolling in appropriate cases; and 2) the district court incorrectly calculated the length of the tribe's delay in filing suit.

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