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Showing posts from August, 2008

U.S. District Court Judge Charged with Attempted Aggravated Sexual Abuse and Abusive Sexual Contact

WASHINGTON – U.S. District Court Judge Samuel B. Kent, 59, was indicted today by a federal grand jury in Houston for allegedly attempting aggravated sexual abuse and for abusive sexual touching of a clerk’s office employee, Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich announced.

The indictment, returned today in the U.S. District Court in Houston, charges Kent with one count of attempted aggravated sexual abuse on March 23, 2007, and two counts of abusive sexual contact, which is alleged to have occurred on Aug. 29, 2003, and March 23, 2007. More...

FTC Acts Against Scammers Who Marketed Envelope-Stuffing Schemes to Spanish-Speaking Consumers Across The Nation

The Federal Trade Commission has charged the marketer of a work-at-home business opportunity with violating federal law by falsely promising Spanish-speaking consumers substantial income for stuffing envelopes. The Commission seeks to prevent further violations and to obtain redress for affected consumers. In another matter, the remaining defendants in a similar scam have agreed to settle FTC charges for allegedly misleading consumers.

According to the FTC’s complaint in the first case, the defendant marketed a fraudulent envelope-stuffing scheme to consumers throughout the nation, including Puerto Rico, via classified ads in Spanish-language newspapers and on a Web site available in Spanish and English. A typical print ad, translated from Spanish, stated that consumers could earn up to $1,500 and directed consumers to the Web site. More...

Secretary Gutierrez Joins President Bush in Announcing Winners of 2007 National Medal of Technology and Innovation

Washington, DC - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos M. Gutierrez joined President George W. Bush in announcing and congratulating the 2007 laureates for the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the nation’s highest honor for technological and scientific achievement. President Bush will present the six individuals and two corporations with their medals at a White House ceremony on September 29, 2008.

“America leads the world in technological innovation because of men, women and cutting-edge corporations like those we honor this year,” Gutierrez said. “Their contributions to our society have impacted all of our lives and they serve as both an inspiration and as role models for future generations of American innovators.” More...

Former New York Power Authority Employee Pleads Guilty to Fraud and Tax Charges

WASHINGTON — A former employee of the New York Power Authority (NYPA) pleaded guilty today to charges that he accepted approximately $167,000 in kickbacks and bribes from a vendor while he was at the purchasing department at the NYPA.

Edward P. Goldblatt of Melville, N.Y., a former purchasing warehouse assistant at the NYPA, pleaded guilty today in the U.S. District Court in Brooklyn to conspiring to defraud the NYPA in a bribery scheme where he accepted kickback payments from a vendor. According to the information, Goldblatt also caused NYPA to pay fraudulent overcharges, which he then shared with that vendor. More...

Justice Department to Monitor Three Local Elections in Alabama and Florida

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WASHINGTON - The Justice Department today announced that on Aug. 26, 2008, it will monitor elections in the towns of Bayou La Batre and Marion, Ala., as well as in Seminole County, Fla., to ensure compliance with the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA).

The VRA authorizes the Justice Department to ask the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to send federal observers to areas that are specially covered in the statute or by a federal court order. Federal observers will be assigned to monitor polling place activities in Marion, Ala., based on the special coverage provisions. More...

$300,000.00 RACIAL DISCRIMINATION LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST JP MORGAN CHASE & COMPANY

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By: Joel Irving

A three hundred thousand dollar racial discrimination lawsuit was filed against JP Morgan Chase on August 8, 2008 in the United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois (CASE #: 1:08-cv-04493). In the civil complaint the plaintiff, Rochelle M. Martin is alleging, among other things that JP Morgan Chase & Company, discriminated against her when it came to promoting her to a position that she was qualified for based on her 17 years of experience with JP Morgan chase. The plaintiff also alleges that the position she applied for was given to a newly hired white employee (who was trained by the plaintiff) who did not have the training or the qualifications outlined in the job posting.

Justice Department Reaches Agreement to Protect Employment Rights of U.S. Army Reservist

WASHINGTON - The Department of Justice announced today that it has settled its employment lawsuit on behalf of Tracey Marshall, a sergeant in the U.S. Army Reserve, against the Clerk of the Circuit Court for Hillsborough County, Fla.The Department’s complaint, filed last October in the U.S. District Court in Tampa, alleged that the Clerk’s Office violated the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA).

The Clerk’s Office failed to reemploy Marshall in her prior position as supervisor of the Clerk’s Court Clerk II Section of the Circuit Criminal Division when she return from active duty in October 2005. In addition, it is alleged that the Clerk’s Office retaliated against Marshall after she took action under USERRA, by transferring her from the Clerk’s Circuit Criminal Division to the Clerks Traffic Department, which offered a lower pay rate. Under the terms of the settlement agreement, the Clerk’s Office will reinstate Marshall to Manager of the Court C…

2008 National Utilization and Compensation Survey Report

(NALA) - The data is based on analysis of the responses to the 2008 National Utilization and Compensation Survey report which was collected by a web based survey from October 15, 2007-February 15, 2008. There were 1434 responses received and utilized for this report. 5% of the population are males; 95% are females. The average age of survey participants is 45. 66% of the participants are members of NALA; 67% have received the Certified Legal Assistant/ Certified Paralegal credential.

Respondents are from a diverse geographical area. Forty-eight states, the Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia are represented by the population. Among the regions of the United States, the Southeast region was represented by 42% of the respondents; Southwest region was represented by 20%; Far West was represented by 11%; Plains States was represented by 14%; Great Lakes was represented by 5%; Rocky Mountain states were represented by 4%; and New England/Mid East was represented by 4% of th…

Paralegal Earings Acording To The Bureau Of Labor Statistic's Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-09 Edition

(BLS) - Earnings of paralegals and legal assistants vary greatly. Salaries depend on education, training, experience, the type and size of employer, and the geographic location of the job. In general, paralegals who work for large law firms or in large metropolitan areas earn more than those who work for smaller firms or in less populated regions. In May 2006, full-time wage-and-salary paralegals and legal assistants had median annual earnings, including bonuses, of $43,040. The middle 50 percent earned between $33,920 and $54,690. The top 10 percent earned more than $67,540, and the bottom 10 percent earned less than $27,450. Median annual earnings in the industries employing the largest numbers of paralegals were:

Federal Government $56,080
Management of companies and enterprises 52,220
Local government 42,170
Legal services 41,460
State government 38,020

In addition to earning a salary, many paralegals receive bonuses, in part, to compensate them for sometimes having to work long ho…

Consumers Have Until September 15 to Apply for Refunds

(FTC) - Airborne Health, Inc., the Bonita Springs, Florida maker of the popular Airborne Effervescent Health Formula, an effervescent tablet marketed as a cold prevention and treatment remedy, has agreed to pay up to $30 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it did not have adequate evidence to support its advertising claims. The FTC’s lawsuit also names Victoria Knight-McDowell, the former schoolteacher who invented Airborne, and her husband Thomas John McDowell. If the settlement is approved by the court, it will prohibit the defendants from making false and unsubstantiated cold prevention, germ-fighting, and efficacy claims. The monetary judgment will be satisfied by the defendants’ adding $6.5 million to the funds they have already agreed to pay to settle a related private class-action lawsuit, bringing the total settlement fund to $30 million.

“There is no credible evidence that Airborne products, taken as directed, will reduce the severity or duration of colds, …

Thompson & Knight Ranked in 2009 Chambers Latin America

(openPR) - Texas (August 20, 2008) – The global law firm of Thompson & Knight LLP is proud to congratulate Alexandre R. Chequer, Jorge G. De Presno-Arizpe, Marcelo Oliveira Mello, Antonio Bastos Sarmento, and Ivan Tauil on their inclusion in the inaugural edition of the 2009 Chambers Latin America “Leaders in their Field” legal directory. The Firm is also pleased to announce its recognition as one of the top law firms in the directory. Thompson & Knight is ranked in Brazil for Corporate/M&A and Energy & Natural Resources: Oil & Gas and in Mexico for Labor & Employment and Real Estate. The directory will be published in October 2008.

Chequer is included in the publication’s Corporate/M&A and Energy & Natural Resources: Oil & Gas sections for Brazil. He is a Partner in the Firm’s International Energy Practice Group and practices from the São Paulo and Houston offices. His practice focuses on project development, representing clients in energy, ethanol,…

CT Summation Partners with CDW to Expand Sales Channel

SAN FRANCISCO—August 20, 2008 -- CT Summation, the premier provider of litigation support and e-discovery solutions (EDD), today announced that it will distribute its award-winning litigation and case management software through CDW Corporation in the U.S. CDW, a leading provider of technology products and services to businesses, governments, healthcare and educational institutions, will market and sell CT Summation iBlaze, WebBlaze and Discovery Cracker. This partnership will expand CDW's document workflow offering to legal professionals in small and mid-sized firms and corporations, and will increase the accessibility of CT Summation's litigation support and EDD product suite throughout the US.

CT Summation is the first litigation support technology that CDW has included in its product portfolio. In addition to marketing and distributing the CT Summation product suite—which covers legal case management from EDD processing to review and analysis through to case production—CDW…

Department Awards Grants to Six States to Help Enhance Career and Technical Education Programs

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded a total of $750,000 in grants to six states to help strengthen and enhance career and technical education (CTE) programs. Indiana, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Nebraska, Florida, and Hawaii have received grants to support partnerships that will create new CTE programs, or adopt existing ones, that will align secondary and postsecondary education courses needed to prepare students for further education and employment.

The grants range from $115,000 to $130,000, and will help the states improve their ability to offer rigorous CTE programs of study. More...

Brothers Will Give Up Cash and Cars to Settle FTC Charges That Earnings Claims for Their ‘Money-Making Secrets’ Misled Consumers

Two brothers have agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they misled consumers with false earnings claims for work-at-home schemes involving free government grants, mystery shopping, online surveys, and data entry. Under the proposed settlement, they are banned from marketing work-at-home opportunities in the future.

The defendants are charged with making false and unsubstantiated earnings claims in violation of the FTC Act. According to the FTC’s complaint, they charged consumers from $47 to $129 to access their “members only” Web sites with their “money-making secrets.” Their advertised programs either did not exist as represented or did not offer quick and easy money with little time or effort as promised. More...

All Aboard The Newest Segment Of Riverside Park South

Standing before a historic New York Central steam locomotive, Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe today joined City Council Member Gale Brewer, Riverside Park Fund President James Dowell, Extell Development Corporation President Gary Barnett, and local children to drive the last spike into the ground to open the fourth and final waterfront phase of Riverside Park South. The 3.5-acre park is one of the last remaining links in a continuous Hudson River Greenway and was once the site of the New York Central Railroad’s 60th Street yard.

“Today’s historic ribbon cutting connects Riverside Park with Hudson River Park in the same way the railroads connected the nations’ two coasts and creates a continuous greenway from Battery Park to 83rd Street,” said Commissioner Benepe. “In addition to new walkways and landscaping, the park’s grandest feature is a 60-year old, 95-ton, retired locomotive. This unique artifact is a reminder of the site’s industrial past as a rail yard, and as …

New Jersey Manufacturer Agrees to Reduce Harmful Emissions

WASHINGTON—Colorite Specialty Resins, headquartered in Somerville, N.J., has agreed to perform corrective measures at its Burlington, N.J., manufacturing facility that will reduce harmful emissions of vinyl chloride to resolve alleged violations of federal and state environmental laws, the Justice Department, the State of New Jersey, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today.

Along with the corrective remedies, Colorite will pay a $1.3 million civil penalty to be split between the United States and the State of New Jersey. Colorite will also perform two federal environment projects valued at over $1 million that will further reduce vinyl chloride emissions from the facility. Colorite’s facility manufactures PVC plastic and vinyl products. As part of its manufacturing processes, the facility emits vinyl chloride. EPA has classified vinyl chloride as a Group A human carcinogen. Exposure to the chemical has been linked to adverse human health effects, including liver c…

STATEMENT FROM GOVERNOR DAVID A. PATERSON ON ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF DEUTSCHE BANK FIRE

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One year ago today two of New York’s bravest were killed in the line of duty, while responding to a fire at Deutsche Bank. The tragic deaths of Joseph Graffagnino and Bobby Beddia were, and are still, a reminder of the dangers faced by our uniformed first responders each and every day. Today, in memory of Mr. Graffagnino and Mr. Beddia, we suspended the work being done by the 400 men and women cleaning the Deutsche Bank building. The greatest tribute to the sacrifices made by these firefighters will be to complete the work on this building safely. My thoughts are with the families and loved ones who still endure the pain of these sudden losses, and my thanks go to their comrades who continue to keep New York safe.

Paralegal Open House

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SUNY Rockland Community College is having a paralegal open house on August 21, 2008 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the Student Union, Room 3214. At the Open House students can sign up for classes and learn details about the American Bar Association approved program, including internship and job opportunities. The program offers a post-degree certificate or an Associate of Applied Science in Paralegal Studies. The paralegal instructors are attorneys and paralegals with experience in their fields (See, RCC).

For additional information please contact:
Deborah Vinecour Esq.
Email: dvinecou@sunyrockland.edu
Phone: (845) 574 - 4169

Congratulations LuAnn Boscia

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LuAnn Boscia, a certified paralegal with Bell Davis & Pitt's Family Law section, has been appointed the Family Law Section's liaison to the N.C. Bar's Dispute Resolution Council. She also is a member of the N.C. Bar's Paralegal Division Council and is the Paralegal Division's liaison to the council. She joined Bell Davis & Pitt's Winston-Salem office in 2000 as a legal assistant and paralegal in the firm's Family Law area (See, Journal Now.com). Here we have another paralegal who is proving that being a paralegal is a professional career choice and not merely a stepping-stone to becoming a lawyer.

U.K. Lawyers Outsourcing to India

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Clifford Chance has embarked on a plan to ramp up its offshore paralegal capacity. This will see its Indian staff handle much of the work that is currently undertaken by London trainees and paralegals – including form 395 ­submissions to register company charges, due-­diligence ­document review for ­litigation, preparing shell company conversions, cloning documents and ­certain low-level drafting (See, The Lawyer.com). This is a bad sign and I hope that U.S. law firms do not follow Clifford Chance's strategy for reducing cost because that would mean a reduction in paralegal jobs. New York Paralegal Blog will keep you posted on the paralegal job market so keep reading. There is a new story posted five days a week.

U.S. Marshals Service Major Case Fugitive, Lorain Dollarama Armed Robbery Suspect, Located in Florida Prison Under an Alias

Cleveland, OH – On August 14, 2008, The Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force located Eliezer Caraballo in Orange County Jail in Orlando, FL after an anonymous tipster advised that he was in jail under an alias. Investigators got on line and plowed through hundreds of photos until they found Caraballo. Caraballo was using the name Geraldo Ortiz and was arrested on June 20, 2008 by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.

Caraballo was the subject of a 4-state man hunt which began January 2008 when he fled Lorain, Ohio via Greyhound en route to the south. Caraballo was featured on America’s Most Wanted internet page where tips led investigators to Orlando, FL.

Caraballo was wanted by the Lorain Police Department, Lorain County Sheriff’s Office and the Elyria Police Department for Aggravated Robbery, Forgery and Theft. He also has four separate outstanding warrants for theft, robbery with a deadly weapon, dangerous ordinance and burglary.

Caraballo is suspected of using a butcher knife to r…

AG CUOMO ANNOUNCES SETTLEMENT WITH WACHOVIA TO RECOVER BILLIONS FOR INVESTORS IN AUCTION RATE SECURITIES

NEW YORK, NY (August 15, 2008) - Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced another agreement to provide liquidity to consumers who purchased auction rate securities. Under the latest agreement, Wachovia Securities, LLC and Wachovia Capital Markets, LLC (collectively, “Wachovia”) will return over $8.5 billion to investors across New York State and the nation. The agreement settles allegations that Wachovia made misrepresentations in its marketing and sales of auction rate securities. Wachovia marketed and sold auction rate securities as safe, cash-equivalent products, when in fact they faced increasing liquidity risk.

Within the past eight days, Cuomo has signed agreements restoring nearly $35 billion of liquidity to thousands of investors nationwide.

Under Cuomo’s settlement, Wachovia has agreed to buy back, no later than November 28, 2008, all illiquid auction rate securities from all Wachovia retail customers, charities, and small businesses. Wachovia will also pay damages to i…

Congress Receives First Report Required by 2005 Bankruptcy Law

The first annual report to Congress containing new bankruptcy statistics mandated by the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 was filed by the Administrative Office in advance of the July 1, 2008 deadline.

The 2005 law requires bankruptcy courts to collect statistics on debtors who meet certain criteria. The Judiciary data systems in place when the law was enacted could not capture all the required information. Consequently, a whole new system and software had to be built, and the Judiciary began collecting the mandated data on October 17, 2006.

The data in this inaugural report represents cases filed or closed during calendar year 2007. Although all cases filed in 2007 are included, the number closed is limited to those commenced after October 17, 2006 and closed during the calendar year. “The primary consequence of this limitation is that data . . . based on cases closed during the reporting period may not be typical for a calendar year period,” the report s…

Federal Judiciary Opposes Bill Involving Discovery and Settlements

A bill intended to prevent parties from using the federal judicial process to conceal matters that harm the public health or safety circumvents the prescribed method of changing court rules, a federal judge told a congressional subcommittee.

U.S. District Judge Mark Kravitz of Connecticut testified in behalf of the Judicial Conference of the United States before the House Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law. He chairs the Conference’s Advisory Committee on Civil Rules.

Kravitz said the Conference opposes the Sunshine in Litigation Act of 2008 (H.R. 5884) “on the ground that it effectively amends the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure outside the rule-making process,” contrary to federal law. “Direct amendment of the federal rules through legislation, even when the rule-making process has been completed, circumvents the careful safeguards that Congress itself established,” he said.

The bill at issue would impose requirements on federal judges for sealing certain materials in t…

Amerigroup Settles Federal & State Medicaid Fraud Claims for $225 Million

WASHINGTON – Amerigroup Corporation has agreed to pay $225 million to resolve claims that it defrauded the Illinois Medicaid program, the Justice Department and the Attorney General of Illinois announced today. Amerigroup, which is headquartered in Virginia Beach, Va., operates managed health care plans throughout the United States.

Today’s settlement resolves allegations that Amerigroup and its Illinois subsidiary systematically avoided enrolling pregnant women, and unhealthy patients in their managed care program in Illinois. Amerigroup was paid by the United States and the state to operate a Medicaid managed care health plan in Illinois to provide health care to low income people. Amerigroup was required by law to enroll all eligible beneficiaries. The United States and the state of Illinois brought claims against the company alleging that it violated this requirement and avoided enrolling unhealthy patients, as well as pregnant women, who were more costly to treat and would have e…

Justice Department and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission File Lawsuit Against the Housing Authority of El Paso, Texas

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WASHINGTON - The Department of Justice and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) have jointly filed a complaint in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas to enforce a mediation settlement agreement that was entered into by the EEOC on behalf of an individual and the Housing Authority of the City of El Paso (Housing Authority). The settlement agreement resolved a charge that was filed against the Housing Authority under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination in employment on the bases of sex, race, national origin and religion, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA).

The charging party claimed that she had been discriminated against on the basis of her national origin and her age when she was not selected for a promotion. In exchange for the dismissal of the charge, the Housing Authority agreed to pay the charging party $2,000, make certain changes to its promotional interview panels, and allow an outsid…

250 Attend Annual Independent Inventors Conference

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Inventors from all over the United States gathered this past weekend for a two day conference designed to educate and support America’s vibrant independent inventor community. The 250 attendees heard presentations from successful inventors and entrepreneurs and attended breakout sessions on a wide variety of topics. Experts from the USPTO conducted workshops on searching, application preparation for patents and trademarks, advanced tips for seasoned inventors, claim construction and commercializing intellectual property through licensing. As always, the conference provided the inventors with lots of time to network and meet one on one with speakers and presenters.

This year for the first time the general sessions were web cast and nearly 100 people logged on to the USPTO website for those presentations. Video of the general sessions will be posted later this week.

In conjunction with this year’s conference, the USPTO rolled out a new feature on its Inventors Resource page, computer ba…

MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND THE NEW YORK METS ANNOUNCED SHEA STADIUM SEAT SALE TO BEGIN ON MONDAY, AUGUST 25

NEW YORK - Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the New York Mets announced that the sale of Shea Stadium seats will begin Monday, August 25 at 9:00 AM exclusively online at mets.com/shea. Fans and collectors worldwide will be able to purchase orange, blue, green, and red seats for $869 per pair. The limited inventory of seats will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Each seat pair will be authenticated by major league baseball’s authentication program and affixed with a tamper-proof hologram displaying a unique identification number.Mets season ticket holders will have the opportunity to purchase their particular seats before the August 25 general public sale. The sale of other Shea memorabilia on mets.com/shea will expand to include seat backs and 45-inch sections of bench seating from Shea’s left field picnic area. Details regarding the sale of additional memorabilia will be announced later this season.

“Citi Field will serve as a fantastic new home for the Mets for decades to co…

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee to Pay U.S. $2.1 Million to Resolve False Claims Act Allegations

WASHINGTON & NEWARK, N.J. – BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee (BCBS-T) has agreed to pay the United States $2.1 million to settle allegations of violating the False Claims Act, the Justice Department announced today. BCBS-T, which is headquartered in Chattanooga, Tenn., operates as Riverbend Government Benefit Administrators.

The settlement resolves allegations that BCBS-T, while the primary Medicare Part A Fiscal Intermediary for the state of New Jersey, failed to adjust the cost-to-charge ratios for many New Jersey hospitals in a timely manner between 2000 and 2002 that resulted in the payment of excessive "outlier payments" by Medicare program to those medical facilities. A Part A Fiscal Intermediary is a private insurance company that processes and pays Medicare claims.

In addition to its standard payment system, Medicare provides supplemental reimbursement, called outlier payments, to hospitals in cases where the cost of care is unusually high. Congress enacted the su…

JAYCEE LEE DUGARD

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Jaycee Lee Dugard was last seen as she walked to her bus stop in South Lake Tahoe, California, on June 10, 1991. It has been claimed that she was abducted by two individuals, a male and a female) who were driving a car. However, extensive law enforcement investigations since the time of her disappearance have neither identified any abductors nor revealed the location of the victim.

Jaycee Lee Dugard was last seen wearing a pink windbreaker, a white t-shirt, pink stretch pants, and white sneakers. ndividuals with information concerning this case should take no action themselves, but instead immediately contact the nearest FBI Office or local law enforcement agency. For any possible sighting outside the United States, contact the nearest United States Embassy or Consulate.

FTC Approves Modified Final Consent Order in Matter of TALX Corporation

Commission approval of modified final consent order – Following a public comment period in the matter of TALX Corporation, the Commission has approved the issuance of a modified final consent order and letters replying to those who submitted public comments. The order modifications include the addition of the name “Corporate Cost Control, Inc.” to Paragraph I.P.I. of the order, the correction of typographical errors, and the addition of language to make Paragraph II.B. of the order applicable to “Relevant Current Persons” whose employment with TALX is terminated involuntarily in the same manner that it is applicable to those whose employment is terminated voluntarily.

The Commission vote approving issuance of the final order was 4-0. (FTC File No. 0610209; the staff contact is Sean D. Hughto, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2199; see press release dated April 28, 2008.)

Copies of the documents mentioned in this release are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and from …

Sheriff Deputy Shot and Killed, Investigators Asking for Publics Help

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Los Angeles - Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) detectives are asking for the public’s help in finding the person(s) responsible for the shooting death of Sheriff’s Deputy Juan Abel Escalante.

On Saturday, August 2, 2008 at about 5:40 a.m., Escalante left his home in Cypress Park near the 3400 block of Thorpe Street to go to work. As he stood by his car, an unidentified suspect or suspects shot him to death from a vehicle.

Los Angeles Fire Department medical personnel responded to the area and pronounced the victim.

LAPD Robbery Homicide Detectives are handling the investigation and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau is assisting with the investigation. LAPD Detectives are working closely with the Sheriff’s Department and are following up on multiple leads, concerning various possibilities.

“We need the community’s help to solve this murder,” said Detective Steven Eguchi, one of the investigators assigned to this case. “Without the public’s help, this investigation could…

APPEALS COURT REVERSES DECISION THAT BOEING’S MESA PLANT DID NOT ENGAGE IN SEX HARASSMENT

PHOENIX – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a decision by a lower court which had concluded that The Boeing Company did not engage in unlawful sexual harassment or retaliation at its plant in Mesa, Ariz. The court of appeals returned the case to Arizona for trial.

In the lawsuit (EEOC v. The Boeing Company, CV-03-1210-PHX-PGR), the EEOC seeks relief on behalf of Kelley Miles, a female mechanic who works on the Apache helicopter that Boeing manufactures for the U.S. Army. Miles works at Boeing’s facility in Mesa.

In the appellate decision (EEOC v. The Boeing Company, No. 05-17386, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, July 31, 2008), the court of appeals reversed the district court’s decision because it concluded that there exist triable issues of fact as to whether Miles was subjected to a hostile work environment based on her sex, whether Boeing adequately responded to her complaints,…

Former Jackson, Mississippi Police Officer Sentenced to Life Imprisonment for Sexually Assaulting a Detainee

WASHINGTON – Maceo Simmons, a former officer with the Jackson Police Department in Jackson, Miss., was sentenced to life imprisonment on Aug. 4, 2008, for sexually assaulting a 19-year-old woman he had detained after a traffic stop, the Justice Department announced today.

The sentence arises out of an incident that occurred on Sept. 19, 1999. The victim was a passenger in a car, which was pulled over by Jackson police officers for running a stop sign. Simmons handcuffed the victim and placed her in the back of his patrol car. He and another officer then drove her to a remote and isolated location, where Simmons repeatedly raped the victim while the second officer acted as a lookout. Simmons was originally sentenced to a term of 20 years imprisonment, but that sentence was reversed on appeal.

"The court’s sentence reflects the gravity of the defendant’s egregious conduct," said Grace Chung Becker, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Divis…

THE JOEL IRVING SHOW

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By: Joel Irving

Tonight we will be talking about dishonest layers and the need for "real" regulation to govern the unscrupulous acts of some attorneys. Additionally, we will talk about the missing sex tapes in Hollywood.

Join me tonight at 10:00 p.m. on The Joel Irving Show as we talk about bad lawyers and everything else! You can get to my show by clicking on this link: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/Joel-Irving

Fact Sheet: FHA to Provide Additional Mortgage Assistance to Struggling Homeowners

The President has signed into law legislation that will allow HUD's Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to continue providing targeted mortgage assistance to homeowners. The Hope for Homeowners program will continue FHA's existing and successful efforts to provide aid to struggling families trapped in mortgages they currently cannot afford. Under the program, certain borrowers facing difficulty with their mortgage will be eligible to refinance into FHA-insured mortgages they can afford. The program will be implemented on October 1, 2008.

Homeowners May Already Be Eligible For Assistance

Families should not wait to seek mortgage relief. Right now, homeowners can determine if they are already eligible for mortgage assistance through FHASecure, FHA's existing refinancing program. They can obtain information through any of the following options:

1. Contact a local, HUD-approved housing counseling agency at HUD.gov;
2. Contact the HOPE NOW Alliance at (888) 995-HOPE; or
3.…

TOBACCO SUPERSTORES, INC. TO PAY $425,000 FOR RACE DISCRIMINATION AGAINST BLACKS

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that Tobacco Superstores, Inc. (TSS) will pay $425,000 and provide significant remedial relief to settle a race discrimination lawsuit on behalf of qualified black workers who were denied promotion to management.

The EEOC’s lawsuit (Case No. 3:05 CV 00218) in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, Jonesboro Division, was filed on behalf of Theresa Sharkey and a class of African Americans in Arkansas and Mississippi. In addition to rejecting the class of workers for promotion because of their race, the suit also alleged that Sharkey was forced to resign because of the company’s failure to promote her. Race discrimination violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In addition to the monetary relief for the class of aggrieved individuals, the three-year consent decree settling the case also enjoins TSS from denying promotions to African American employees because of the…

ELECTRONICS RETAILER 'VIDEO ONLY' TO PAY $630,000 FOR HARASSMENT AND RETALIATION

PORTLAND, Ore. – Home electronics retailer Video Only will pay $630,000 and implement preventative measures to settle two discrimination lawsuits, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today. Judge Garr M. King of the U.S. District Court in Portland signed the Consent Decree approving the settlement.

According to the EEOC's suit (Civil Case No. 06-1362-KI in U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon), two employees of Video Only’s Jantzen Beach store in Portland -- Michael Gonzales, a Hispanic, and Jayson Lewis, an African American whose fiancée and two young children are Jewish -- faced repeated slurs and jokes about their race, national origin, and religion. The abuse included use of the “N–word” by management; the telling of racially offensive “jokes”; use of the epithet “beaner”; and a doll with its hair and face painted black that was hog-tied and hung by a nail in the break room.

The EEOC also alleged that the company retaliated against Gonza…

Atty. Gen. Brown Settles Potato Chip Lawsuit With Heinz, Frito-Lay & Kettle Foods

LOS ANGELES--California Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today settled lawsuits against Heinz, Frito-Lay, Kettle Foods and Lance Inc. after the companies agreed to slash levels of the cancer-causing chemical acrylamide in their potato chips and french fries.

“The companies agreed to reduce this carcinogenic chemical in fried potatoes--a victory for public health and safety in California,” Attorney General Brown said. “Other companies should follow this lead and take steps to reduce acrylamide in french fries and potato chips,” Brown added.

In 2005, the attorney general sued McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King, KFC, Frito-Lay, Kettle Foods, Lance, Procter & Gamble and Heinz, for selling potato chips and french fries containing high levels of acrylamide, a chemical known to the state to cause cancer. Acrylamide is a by-product of frying, roasting and baking foods--particularly potatoes--that contain certain amino acids. In 2002, Swedish scientists discovered high levels of cancer-cau…

New Orleans Woman Sentenced to Prison for Aiding and Abetting Unregistered Agent of China

WASHINGTON — Yu Xin Kang, age 33, of New Orleans, La., was sentenced today in the Eastern District of Virginia to 18 months in prison and three years of supervised release for aiding and abetting an unregistered agent of a foreign government, namely the People’s Republic of China (PRC), in violation of 18 U.S.C., Sections 2 and 951. Kang pleaded guilty to this offense on May 28, 2008, after being arrested by federal authorities on Feb. 11, 2008.

Patrick Rowan, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security; U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg of the Eastern District of Virginia; and Arthur M. Cummings, II, Executive Assistant Director of the FBI’s National Security Branch, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema imposed the sentence. See, USDOJ.