AP Sources: Manslaughter Charge Explored In Gulf Oil Spill

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) Manslaughter and perjury are among possible charges that Justice Department investigators are exploring in the early stages of their probe into the Gulf oil spill, people familiar with the inquiry said Tuesday. These people said the Justice Department is not ruling out the possibility...

Federal Government Appeals Judge's Health Care Ruling

ATLANTA - (AP) The federal health care overhaul's core requirement to make virtually all citizens buy health insurance or face tax penalties is constitutional because Congress has the authority to regulate interstate business, the Justice Department said in its appeal of a ruling that struck down...

Verizon Pays $93.5 Million To Settle Whistleblower Lawsuit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) Verizon Communications Inc. has paid $93.5 million to settle allegations that it overcharged the federal government, the Justice Department said Tuesday. The lawsuit was filed by Stephen Shea, a "whistleblower" in 2007, and alleged overbilling as far back as 1999, first...

Court Won't Lift Stay On Arizona Immigration Law

PHOENIX - (AP) A federal appeals court on Monday refused to lift a stay blocking major parts of Arizona's immigration law from taking effect and said the federal government is likely to be able to prove the controversial law is unconstitutional. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals turned down....

Johnson & Johnson, DePuy Pay $76.9 Million To Settle Foreign Bribery Claims

(Mealey's) Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and subsidiary DePuy International Ltd. will pay $76.9 million to resolve criminal and civil allegations in the United States and in the United Kingdom that they paid kickbacks to doctors in Greece, Poland, Romania and Iraq to use the companies' drugs...

Supreme Court Takes No Action On Virginia's Challenge To Health Care Law, For Now

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Although the state of Virginia has asked for its lawsuit challenging the federal health care law to go straight to the U.S. Supreme Court, the high court on April 15 took no action on the request, the Associated Press has reported. Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli in February...

Puerto Rican Justice Department Faces U.S. Lawsuit

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - (AP) Federal officials said Tuesday that they filed a discrimination lawsuit against the Puerto Rican Justice Department, accusing it of knowingly relocating an employee in a wheelchair to a building that is not handicapped-accessible. The complaint states that the woman could...

New York City Sues Over Internet Sales Of Tax-Free Cigarettes

NEW YORK - (AP) New Yorkers hoping to avoid the nation's highest cigarette taxes have long turned to the Internet as a source for cheap smokes, but few bought as often, or as much, as Roza Budansky, according to city officials. Over a three-year period, the 64-year-old purchased nearly $1 million...

DynCorp To Pay $7.7 Million In Whistleblower Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) Leading U.S. contractor DynCorp International has agreed to pay $7.7 million to settle a lawsuit alleging it submitted false claims for a State Department civilian police training program in Iraq. The Justice Department announced Friday that DynCorp subcontractor The Saudi Group...

Supreme Court Questions Limits On Use Of Prescription Data

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) The Supreme Court cast doubt Tuesday on efforts by states to limit drug manufacturers' use of information about the prescription drugs that doctors like to prescribe. The court took up a dispute between the state of Vermont and companies that sell doctors' prescribing...

DOJ Let Into Lawsuit On South Carolina Jail's Bible-Only Policy

COLUMBIA, S.C. - (AP) A federal judge says the U.S. Justice Department can join a lawsuit challenging a South Carolina jail's policy barring inmates from any reading material other than the Bible. Court documents filed Monday show U.S. District Judge Margaret Seymour agreed to allow the government...

U.S. Government Suing More Abortion Activists

WICHITA, Kan. - (AP) The Justice Department under President Barack Obama has taken a harder line against anti-abortion activists accused of trying to block access to clinics, suing at least a half-dozen of them under a federal law that lay mostly dormant during the Bush administration. The law, written...

Government Urges Appeals Court To Uphold Health Care Law

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) The Obama administration said Wednesday that health care reforms should be upheld in the courts because the costs of the uninsured are a burden on interstate commerce. In arguments filed in a federal appeals court in Atlanta, the government said the new law provided a comprehensive...

'Queen Of Torts' Named Ground Zero Fund Administrator

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) A prominent New York attorney known as the "Queen of Torts" for her courtroom defense of some of the country's top companies is tackling a vastly different job running the $2.78 billion fund to compensate ground zero workers and others who say they were sickened...

Arizona Sues Justice Department Over Medical Marijuana

PHOENIX - (AP) Arizona officials are taking the state's own medical marijuana law to court. Attorney General Tom Horne late Friday sued the U.S. Justice Department and other defendants on behalf of the state and Gov. Jan Brewer. The suit asks a federal judge to rule on whether strict compliance with...

APNewsBreak: Justice Department to Meet with BCS

The Justice Department's antitrust division will meet with the BCS this summer, following up on concerns the department raised with the NCAA about college football's postseason format. Bowl Championship Series executive director Bill Hancock told the Associated Press on Thursday that a Justice...

Judge Won't Let Sierra Club Join Gulf Oil Spill Lawsuit

JACKSON, Miss. - (AP) A federal magistrate judge won't allow the Sierra Club to join a lawsuit filed by the Justice Department against BP and other companies over last year's disastrous Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Judge Sally Shushan said in her order Tuesday that the environmental group can file...

Feds Appeal Bankruptcy Court Ruling Against Gay Marriage Ban

SAN FRANCISCO - (AP) The Obama administration appealed a bankruptcy court ruling that found the federal ban on gay marriage unconstitutional. The Justice Department filed the appeal Monday, even though President Barack Obama said he agrees the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. Nevertheless...

Obama Reaps Victory As 6th Circuit Upholds Health Care Overhaul

CINCINNATI - (AP) In the first ruling by a federal appeals court on President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, a panel in Cincinnati handed the administration a victory Wednesday by agreeing that the government can require a minimum amount of insurance for Americans. A Republican-appointed judge...

Justice Department Corrects Court Filing In Anthrax Lawsuit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) The Justice Department corrected a legal filing Tuesday to reassert its conclusion that a lone federal scientist in the fall of 2001 staged the anthrax attacks that killed five people and sickened 17 others. Court papers the department submitted last Friday suggested that the...

Special Master Sought To Oversee Gulf Oil Spill Claims

(AP) The lead attorneys for people and businesses suing BP over last year's Gulf oil spill want a federal judge to appoint a special master to oversee the claims process. They said in court papers Monday that administrator Kenneth Feinberg has been too slow to process interim payments. . . . Full...

Sidley Partner Virginia Seitz Confirmed As Assistant Attorney General For Office Of Legal Counsel

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Sidley Austin LLP has announced that Virginia Seitz has been confirmed by the Senate to lead the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel. Seitz has been a partner in Sidley's Washington, D.C., office since 1998. She concentrates in appellate practice in the federal...

Justice Department Challenges Tough Alabama Immigration Law

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - (AP) The Obama administration is challenging Alabama's new law that would let police detain those stopped for traffic offenses who they suspect are in the country illegally, a statute described as one of the toughest immigration regulations nationwide. In a complaint Monday, the...

Judge Allows American To Sue Donald Rumsfeld Over Torture

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) A federal judge has ruled that former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld can be sued personally for damages by a former U.S. military contractor who says he was tortured during a nine-month imprisonment in Iraq. The lawsuit lays out a dramatic tale of the disappearance of the...

Drug Company Lawyer Taped Trying To Foil Lawsuit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) International business can be an ethical jungle, but it's rare to get details of bare-knuckle tactics on tape. According to a recording and sworn testimony provided to The Associated Press, a lawyer in Mexico for a leading U.S. drug manufacturer offered to pay an opposing...