April 30, 2013
The Supreme Court rebuffed the state of Alabama on Monday by deciding not to intervene in a case where federal judges blocked a state law that criminalizes the harboring of illegal immigrants. By refusing to hear Alabama’s appeal of the Obama administration’s lower court victories, the justices steered clear of a hot-button debate at a time when Congress is engaged in writing legislation to overhaul immigration laws.
Both a federal judge and an appeals court agreed with the White House that federal law trumped a provision in Alabama state law that made it illegal to harbor or transport anyone in the state who had entered the country illegally. The appeals court ruling remains intact as a result of the Supreme Court’s refusal to intervene. A brief order issued by the Supreme Court on Monday said Justice Antonin Scalia disagreed with the decision not to hear the case.
March 8, 2013
Associated Press, 3/7/2013
Mexico’s Supreme Court has ruled that two anti-gay words commonly used in Mexico are hate speech and not protected as freedom of expression under the country’s constitution, allowing those offended by them to sue for moral damages. The magistrates voted 3-2 late Wednesday in favor of a journalist from the central city of Puebla who in 2010 sued a reporter at a different newspaper who had written a column referring to him as “punal” and others at the plaintiff’s newspaper as “maricones.” Both words roughly translate into “faggot.”
The majority said the terms are offensive and discriminatory. “Even though they are deeply rooted expressions in Mexican society, the fact is that the practices of the majority of society can’t validate the violations of basic right,” their opinion said.
January 24, 2013
Los Angeles Times, 1/23/2013
In a surprising climax to a case that has strained Franco-Mexican relations for years, Mexico’s Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered the immediate release of Florence Cassez, a young French woman serving a 60-year sentence for her involvement with a Mexican kidnapping ring.
Cassez, 38, was arrested in 2005 along with her Mexican boyfriend, whom authorities said was the head of a kidnapping group called the Zodiacs. Although Cassez lived in a compound where victims were held, she maintained that she had committed no crimes.
August 13, 2012
The New York Times, 8/10/12
In May 2011, Jethro Sánchez, a 27-year-old engineer, was detained by the Mexican Army, and found tortured and killed. An army colonel was accused of ordering soldiers to hide the body to cover up the crime, and the case vanished in the country’s maze of military justice.
But Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that the colonel should be tried in civilian courts, a decision that human rights groups say could upend the way Mexico deals with rights abuses committed by the military in the course of fighting the country’s pervasive drug war.
June 25, 2012
USA Today, 06/25/2012
The U.S. Supreme Court struck down three portions of Arizona’s controversial immigration law on Monday, but allowed one of the key provisions to stand in a highly anticipated split decision.
The court did allow the main component of the law to stand. That requires state and local police to check the immigration status of people they’ve stopped or detained if a “reasonable suspicion” exists that the person is in the country illegally.
To see the actual ruling (starts at page 5), click here.
December 12, 2011
The U.S. Supreme Court said it will consider reviving the trailblazing Arizona law that would use local police and prosecutors to crack down on illegal immigration.
Already set to rule on President Barack Obama’s health-care law by the middle of next year, the justices today added another high-profile case that has implications for similar laws around the country and for the 2012 elections.
The court will hear Arizona’s appeal of a ruling that said the state was interfering with the federal government’s authority over immigration policy. Arizona, which says its 370- mile border with Mexico is the crossing point for half the nation’s illegal immigrants, contends it has the right to tackle a problem that the national government has failed to address.
July 18, 2011
La semana pasada, la Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación (SCJN) decidió que los militares serán juzgados por tribunales civiles —y no de guerra— en casos de violación a los derechos humanos de civiles. Este fallo causó indignación y preocupación en las Fuerzas Armadas, confirmaron funcionarios de la Secretaría de la Defensa Nacional (Sedena) y de la Marina Armada de México (Semar).
A falta de una reglamentación para operar en las calles, los institutos armados han considerado que modificarán su modo de actuar. En el caso de la Semar, se considera la probabilidad de un repliegue de tropas en zonas de Tamaulipas, Guerrero y Coahuila que no tienen costas.
January 4, 2011
El Universal, 1/4/2011
La Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nación eligió ayer como presidente a un ministro de tendencia liberal, Juan Silva Meza, quien se comprometió a encabezar una administración que colabore a garantizar la seguridad y paz social de la población, que se caracterice por la austeridad y por la transparencia en el manejo de los recursos públicos.
Silva Meza, un juez de 66 años de edad con 30 años de carrera judicial, fue electo para encabezar el máximo tribunal del país por nueve votos contra uno, para el periodo que va del 3 de enero de 2011 al 31 de diciembre de 2014.
El voto que le faltó para generar la unanimidad se lo negó el ministro conservador Sergio Aguirre Anguiano, quien en el pasado se opuso a su arribo a la presidencia y ahora apoyó a la ministra Margarita Luna Ramos.
La decisión de Aguirre, que evitó la unanimidad, generó que la ministra Margarita le agradeciera en público su voto —a pesar de que la votación había sido secreta— y que aclarara que ella nunca buscó competir por el cargo.
December 8, 2010
The Wall Street Journal, 12/8/2010
Mexico’s Supreme Court has given state oil monopoly Petroleos Mexicanos the green light to continue with plans to award incentive-based service contracts to private companies that want to drill for oil in the country.
At the same time, the court reiterated Mexico’s exclusive obligation and right to develop its oil wealth, reinforcing the understanding that any reserves and hydrocarbons produced remain the property of the state.
December 8, 2010
Washington Post, 12/8/2010
THE SUPREME COURT case U.S. Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting elucidates two important principles: First, that states will take matters into their own hands when the federal government fails to act in the face of legitimate concerns; and second, that when states and the feds butt heads, the courts will almost invariably be asked to settle the dispute, stripping both sides of control over the outcome.
The case, which is scheduled to be heard on Wednesday and involves a challenge to an Arizona immigration law, should serve as a wake-up call for Capitol Hill and the White House and spur action on much-needed comprehensive immigration reform. The law allows Arizona to revoke the state licenses of employers who hire illegal immigrants. It also requires Arizona employers to use the federal E-Verify systemto ensure that all employees are eligible to work in this country. Arizona says that this type of licensing power has long been the province of the states. It points to aSupreme Court ruling from 1976 that concluded that states had the right to impose sanctions against employers who hired illegal workers.
But that high court ruling came some 10 years before Congress amended the immigration laws to claim for itself almost exclusive power to regulate immigration, including employer sanctions. Although these revisions carved out a licensing exception for the states, the Chamber and its allies make a compelling case that the exceptions were meant only for provisions that covered employers who relied on seasonal agricultural workers. Arizona’s law is not limited to this area, and it is less of a licensing scheme – meant to ensure basic qualifications or requirements – than it is an exercise of traditional law enforcement power. The Arizona law’s insistence that employers use the E-Verify system also clashes with the federal government’s determination that participation be voluntary.