Exploitable holes in law firm cybersecurity are allowing hackers to sell access to law firm secrets on the dark web. According to CNBC, a cybersecurity firm showed how a Russian hacker was selling access to a New York law firm’s network and files for $3,500. The founder and CEO of the Q6 cybersecurity company also showed similar access to law firms in Beverly Hills and elsewhere across the country. A Secret Service agent who works cybercrime cases says he wouldn’t be surprised at all to find that stolen data from law firms was being sold online. One major target hackers are looking for are attorneys’ usernames and passwords. Read more at CNBC.
A federal judge in San Francisco has ruled that plaintiffs have put forth reliable scientific evidence that exposure to Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller can cause cancer. Andrus Wagstaff partner and National Trial Lawyers member Aimee Wagstaff is national co-lead counsel of that federal litigation and says she “is pleased [her] clients will have their day in court to hold Monsanto liable for their injuries.” The Honorable Vince Chhabria of the United States District Court of Northern California issued an order denying Monsanto’s requests to dismiss the case. Wagstaff says this is a huge victory nationwide for people harmed by Roundup exposure.
Thousands of people have filed lawsuits against Monsanto, the company which developed Roundup almost 40 years ago, with complaints that Roundup exposure caused their Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a blood borne cancer. All of those lawsuits which were filed in federal courts throughout the United States were consolidated before Judge Chhabria in In re: Roundup Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 2741). Under the federal rules, Judge Chhabria is charged with conducting all pre-trial proceedings in the combined litigation. Lead counsel for the plaintiffs in that litigation include Aimee Wagstaff, of Andrus Wagstaff, Denver, CO; Robin Greenwald of Weitz and Luxenberg of New York City, NY; and Mike Miller of the Miller Law Firm, of Alexandria, VA.
The proceedings before the Court involved the Court’s obligation under the Supreme Court case of Daubert v. Merrill to act as a gatekeeper to ensure that expert testimony offered at trial is founded upon sound scientific methodology. In an extensive written ruling, Judge Chhabria declared that plaintiffs proffered scientific testimony founded upon sound scientific principles and certain testimony that Roundup can cause Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma would be allowed to go to the jury in future trials. “Today’s ruling marks a significant victory in the fight for justice on behalf of our clients who were injured by exposure to Roundup,” said Wagstaff. “We look forward to our day in court and the opportunity to hold Monsanto accountable.”
Additional lawsuits have been filed in state court in Missouri, California, Montana, and Delaware. Those cases are following independent tracks to trial.
As Americans debate the Trump administration’s policy of denying asylum to many people seeking to enter the country at the Mexico border, as well as its policy of separating migrant children from their parents, The Atlantic has produced a short documentary (below) that shows a family seeking asylum being turned away. Earlier this month, Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a ruling that the US would no longer accept gang violence or domestic abuse as reasons for granting asylum. Now, asylum-seekers are being turned back by border patrol agents at ports of entry. After being repeatedly rejected, the Berduo family sleeps on the ground near the port of entry, trapped in immigrant purgatory.
The Trump administration’s latest and most terrible tactic in its war on immigration is taking young children away from their parents at the border and keeping them separated. While the United States of America has plenty of regrettable stains on its history such as slavery and the internment of Japanese-Americans in World War II, separating young children from their parents is cruel, inhumane and shameful. CNN reports in the video below that one parent says Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents took her child away while she was breastfeeding it.
At Slate, Dahlia Lithwick comments that even as we become desensitized to President Trump’s regular and repeated over-the-top antics, we must summon our outrage to protest this particularly horrifying policy.
That we are finding ourselves unable to process or act or organize because the large-scale daily horrors are escalating and the news is overpowering is perfectly understandable. But we need to understand that and acknowledge it and then refuse it any purchase. Because to be overwhelmed and to do nothing are a choice.
We agree. While it may not be part of an overarching strategy on behalf of Trump to desensitize us to these outrageous actions (that would be giving him too much credit), we must summon outrage at this reprehensible policy, and demand action. Separating children from their parents in an effort to keep them out of our country is unconscionable, and a policy that we will regret if we allow it, to say nothing of how dimly it will be viewed through the lens of history. Please do whatever you can to insist that this be stopped as quickly as possible. Our nation is heading down a slippery slope, and we must dig in and do whatever we can to stop this tragic and terrible policy.
In comments to media today, President Trump invited NFL players who would protest during the national anthem to suggest individuals to be considered for a presidential pardon.
Jeff Robinson, deputy legal director at the American Civil Liberties Union, had the following response:
“President Trump has spent much of his first 18 months in office degrading NFL players who protest police brutality and racial injustice. Today, he has tried once again to change the narrative about the work of those and other activists, betraying a fundamental misunderstanding of the cause behind these protests — and using racist dog whistles to do it.
“While we support a fair and concerted effort to address unfair sentences in the federal system, pardons alone won’t fix our deeply broken criminal justice system. We need real reforms that will address systemic racism and implicit bias in policing that too often results in violence and death. We need a bail system that doesn’t criminalize poverty. We need sentencing reform so that thousands of Black and brown people aren’t ensnared in jails and prisons. Should the president meet with athletes, we hope he will propose serious policy changes that get us closer to those goals.”
This statement is online here:
The American Bar Association has posted a new ABA Legal Fact Check that explores the legal precedents related to whether a U.S. president can act “above the law.”
Political conversation turned to this question in the past few days when Rudy Giuliani, an attorney for President Donald Trump, suggested a sitting president could not be indicted. Trump himself fueled the conversation a day later when he tweeted that he had the “absolute right” to pardon himself if necessary.
The new fact check explores the relevant parts of two U.S. Supreme Court decisions involving then-Presidents Richard Nixon in 1974 and Bill Clinton in 1997 and how they might pertain to legal situations today. It also analyzes the Supreme Court’s assertion in the Nixon case that a president does not have “unqualified presidential privilege of immunity from judicial process under all circumstances.”
ABA Legal Fact Check seeks to help the media and public find dependable answers and explanations to sometimes confusing legal questions and issues. The URL for the site is www.abalegalfactcheck.com. Follow us on Twitter @ABAFactCheck.
With more than two billion monthly active users, Facebook is the world’s most popular social media platform. And, as we’ve recently been reminded, they have a massive amount of data on your audience – including your ideal clients.
Are you using Facebook to market your law firm? If you’re not, you should be. Join Crisp CEO Michael Mogill on Wednesday, June 13 at 1:00 PM for a free webinar on how you can leverage Facebook to generate leads, raise awareness for your firm, and take your marketing to the next level: The Facebook Advertising Playbook for Law Firms.
Whether you’re a Facebook expert or brand new to the platform, this webinar will show you the ins and outs of setting up and optimizing your law firm’s Facebook ad campaigns to create an incoming stream of quality leads.
Ready to get started? Sign up here! Webinar seats are limited, so make sure you register early to secure a spot.
Michael Cohen, an attorney for President Donald Trump, has a reputation for threatening people, especially journalists, to protect his most precious client. Cohen’s facing a lawsuit from adult film star Stormy Daniels, who claims Cohen pressured her into signing a non-disclosure agreement about her alleged affair with Trump. As you may know, Cohen has also had his offices and home raided by the FBI. Now, a recording of Cohen threatening a reporter has been released. NPR‘s Tim Mak, who was working for The Daily Beast in 2015, has released a recording of Cohen making legal threats to him. You can listen to them below.
Researchers say a flaw they’ve found in a breathalyzer widely used by law enforcement could affect the test results and put thousands of DUI convictions in question. ZDNet reports the source code used in the Draeger Alcotest 9510 breathalyzer can produce incorrect results. Defense attorneys have long believed the breathalyzer could be faulty, and a Washington attorney hired a software engineer and a security researcher to investigate the suspected flaw. The video below, courtesy of ZDNet, explains the problem and the legal threats Draeger made over revealing the research. You can read more about the story here.
Michael Avenatti, the attorney for adult film star Stormy Daniels, with whom President Donald Trump is alleged to have had an affair, is broadening his case against Trump. Avenatti has released a report detailing the business affairs of Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen. As you may recall, Cohen facilitated the payment of $130,000 to Daniels to purchase her silence regarding her involvement with Trump. In this podcast from The New Yorker, Adam Davidson talks with Dorothy Wickenden about Avenatti’s aggressive push beyond the hush money scandal to questions about Cohen selling access to the president.