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


Underwood Approved as Interim NY Attorney General

For Barbara Underwood, her appointment as New York's acting attorney general must have been a pleasure and a pain.

One week, she was sworn in as the first woman to hold the post. The next week, legislators were interviewing other candidates for the permanent job.

That's because the governor named Underwood to replace Eric Schneiderman, who recently resigned in disgrace. Now the legislature has voted to have her fill out his term.

Trump Names 10 More Judges, Seven for New York

President Trump has been on a tear naming judicial nominees, adding to a growing list that now numbers more than 70 awaiting appointments.

With 10 new nominations this week, Trump is quickly solidifying what may be his lasting legacy. He has the opportunity to appoint more judges than any recent president.

The latest nominations will especially impact federal courts in New York. Most of the nominees are government attorneys, prosecutors, or former prosecutors.

Court: Prisoners Can't Be Forced to Snitch

In a twist on the right to remain silent, a federal appeals court said prison guards could not compel an inmate to snitch.

Mark Burns sued New York prison officials for allegedly punishing him after he refused to tell them who hit him. He said the guards made him an offer he couldn't refuse: turn informant or solitary confinement.

You can't do that, explained the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in Burns v. Martuscello. Prisoners, of all people, should have a right to keep to themselves.

Although Jay Z was rumored to show up in court this week, he didn't, disappointing many, including the SEC. He filed an affidavit with the federal district court explaining that he was too busy preparing for an upcoming tour to appear. However, after being ordered by the court to appear at an SEC interview, his attorney stated that Jay Z would appear on May 15.

The SEC has been wanting to speak with Jay Z for several months now related to some dealings with brand Iconix. After several attempts and two subpoenas though, they still have not been successful. Unfortunately for the busy rapper and business mogul, his attorney's attempts to limit the amount of time for questioning were unsuccessful.

Court Reverses Backyard Search

No thanks to himself, Robert Alexander got lucky.

Shortly after three in the morning, he was outside his house with a bottle of vodka in his hand standing next to a car when police officers approached. They saw drugs in the vehicle and arrested the passengers.

"Out of respect," Alexander, a convicted felon, told the officers, he was "just going to put the liquor bottle in the back." Naturally the officers checked his backyard and found two guns, but Alexander got a break in United States of America v. Alexander.

Court Revives Muslim-Americans' Lawsuit Against FBI Agents

Muhammad Tanvir, a Muslim-American, tried to fly from the United States to visit his mother in Pakistan for five years.

Every time he went to the airport, however, federal agents stopped him. The FBI had placed him on the "No Fly List," a watchlist for suspected terrorists.

Tanvir sued in Tanvir v. Tanzin, claiming he wasn't a terrorist and that the agents had violated his civil rights. A trial judge threw out the case, but the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals reversed.

There are tire fires, and then there are tire fires. And when it comes to the controversy surrounding President Trump and adult film actress Stormy Daniels, there's really no better way to describe it than a tire fire.

Apparently, thanks to the Tweeter-in-Chief's April 18 tweeted comment, and retweeting of some Twitter trash talk, about Stormy Daniels, the actress has filed a defamation lawsuit against Trump. The post in question asserts that Stormy Daniels lied about the man who threatened her, and that the sketch artist drawing is actually a former boyfriend.

Tax Shelter Guru Gets $61M IRS Penalty

John Larson did the time, but he apparently can't pay the fine.

And who could? It's a $61,534,027 tax penalty, but who's counting in Larson v. United States of America?

The U.S Second Circuit Court of Appeals counted, but it doesn't really care. The appeals court dismissed his challenge to the penalty, saying it didn't have jurisdiction.

Court Lays Down Law on Sidewalk Rage

Sidewalk rage is a thing, and it is getting out of control, especially in big cities.

In the workday rush, people can't help but bump into each other. Too many people, too little sidewalk.

Naturally, New York has given us a legal precedent for sidewalk rage in the United States. In Wright v. Musanti, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals explained when enough is enough.

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals has overturned the federal Department of Transportation's decision to suspend the increase of the fine amount for automakers that are found to be out of compliance with CAFE standards.

Under the Corporate Average Fuel Economy program, automakers are required to meet certain average fuel economy numbers, and if they don't they must pay a fine of $55 per mpg per car the automaker missed the requirement on. The increased fine amount of $140 per mpg per car was indefinitely suspended last summer by the DOT, but has now just been un-suspended.