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Pirate Party Wins At Least One European Parliament Seat 674

reeeh2000 writes "According to TorrentFreak, with half of polling stations now closed in Sweden, the Pirate Party has at least one guaranteed seat in the EU Parliament. Currently, the party is sitting with 7% of the vote. Depending on how the remaining districts voted, the Pirate Party could win another seat, for a total of two." Reader lordholm adds a link to an article about exit polls in Sweden (link in Swedish) indicating that the Pirate Party will score two seats, writing "According to the polls, the pirate party is the largest party in the 18-30 year age category of voters. The final counting of votes (including around a million postal votes) will not be done until later next week."
The Media

Wikipedia Bans Church of Scientology 665

El Reg writes "Showing a new-found resolve to crack down on self-serving edits, Wikipedia has banned contributions from all IP addresses owned or operated by the Church of Scientology. According to Wikipedia administrators, this marks the first time such a high-profile organization has been banished for allegedly pushing its own agenda on the 'free encyclopedia anyone can edit.'"

Church of Scientology On Trial In France 890

An anonymous reader sends word that a trial has opened in Paris that could shut down Scientology in France. The organization stands accused of targeting vulnerable people for commercial gain. Scientology does not have the status of a religion there, as it does in the US, and anti-cult groups have pursued it vigorously over more than 30 years. The current case is based on complaints filed by two women in December 1998 and July 1999. Three other former members who had initially joined the complaint have withdrawn after "reaching a financial arrangement with church officials." If convicted, the seven top Scientologists in France face up to 10 years in prison and a fine of €1M. The Church of Scientology-Celebrity Centre and its Scientology Freedom Space bookshop not only face a much larger fine but also run the risk of being shut down completely.
The Courts

Swedish ISP Deletes Customer ID Info 177

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "A Swedish internet service provider, Bahnhof, has begun deleting customer identification information in order to prevent it from being used as evidence against its customers under Sweden's new legislation against copyright infringement via peer-to-peer file sharing. According to this report on 'The Local,' it is entirely legal for it to do so. The company's CEO, Jon Karlung, is identified as 'a vociferous opponent of the measures that came into force on April 1st,' and is quoted saying that he is determined to protect the company's clients, and that 'It's about the freedom to choose, and the law makes it possible to retain details. We're not acting in breach of IPRED; we're following the law and choosing to destroy the details.'"

Judge Orders White House To Produce Wiretap Memos 178

sv_libertarian sends this excerpt from the Associated Press: "A judge has ordered the Justice Department to produce White House memos that provide the legal basis for the Bush administration's post-Sept. 11 warrantless wiretapping program. US District Judge Henry Kennedy Jr. signed an order (PDF) Friday requiring the department to produce the memos by the White House legal counsel's office by Nov. 17. He said he will review the memos in private to determine if any information can be released publicly without violating attorney-client privilege or jeopardizing national security. Kennedy issued his order in response to lawsuits by civil liberties groups in 2005 after news reports disclosed the wiretapping."
The Courts

RIAA Litigation May Be Unconstitutional 281

dtjohnson writes "A Harvard law school professor has submitted arguments on behalf of Joel Tenenbaum in RIAA v. Tenenbaum in which Professor Charles Nesson claims that the underlying law that the RIAA uses is actually a criminal, rather than civil, statute and is therefore unconstitutional. According to this article, 'Nesson charges that the federal law is essentially a criminal statute in that it seeks to punish violators with minimum statutory penalties far in excess of actual damages. The market value of a song is 99 cents on iTunes; of seven songs, $6.93. Yet the statutory damages are a minimum of $750 per song, escalating to as much as $150,000 per song for infringement "committed willfully."' If the law is a criminal statute, Neeson then claims that it violates the 5th and 8th amendments and is therefore unconstitutional. Litigation will take a while but this may be the end for RIAA litigation, at least until they can persuade Congress to pass a new law."

International Spam Ring Shut Down 243

smooth wombat writes "An international spam ring with ties to Australia, New Zealand, China, India, and the US is in the process of being shut down. Finances of members in the US are being frozen using the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 while the FBI is pursuing criminal charges. The group sent spam advertising male enhancement herbs and other items using a botnet estimated at 35,000 computers, and able to send 10 billion emails per day. The Federal Trade Commission monitored the group's finances and found that they had cleared $400,000 in Visa charges in one month alone."
The Courts

Jack Thompson Disbarred 522

Sockatume writes "The Florida Supreme Court has approved Judge Dava Tunis' recommendations for the permanent disbarment of John B. "Jack" Thompson, with no leave to reapply and $43,675.35 in disciplinary costs. The ruling is a step up from the enhanced disbarment that had been suggested by the prosecution, which would have forbidden him from reapplying for ten years. Thompson has 30 days to appeal the ruling before the disbarment is permanent. Thompson responds to the ruling."

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