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Consumers seek to raise California cap on malpractice awards

By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO, California (Reuters) - Consumer advocates in California said on Monday they had gathered enough signatures to place an initiative on the November ballot that would raise a decades-old state cap on medical malpractice awards to $1.1 million. The proposed initiative, backed by trial lawyers and the Santa Monica-based Consumer Watchdog, would more than quadruple the amount of money a patient could be awarded for pain and suffering in a malpractice case - currently capped at $250,000.

Men from Ukraine and New York indicted in U.S. cybercrime case

By Jonathan Stempel (Reuters) - Federal prosecutors on Monday announced the indictment of three men they accuse of being members of an international cybercrime ring that tried to steal at least $15 million by hacking into U.S. customer accounts at 14 financial institutions and the Department of Defense's payroll service.

Philippine leader defends controversial 'cyber libel' law

Philippine President Benigno Aquino on Wednesday defended a controversial cybercrime law penalising online libel, a day after the top court upheld its legality in a setback for campaigners who argue it could curb Internet freedom. The Cybercrime Protection Act was passed in 2012 to stamp out online scourges such as fraud, identity theft, spamming and child pornography, but its implementation was suspended after coming under challenge from various groups.

Philippine leader defends controversial 'cyber libel' law

Philippine President Benigno Aquino on Wednesday defended a controversial cybercrime law penalising online libel, a day after the top court upheld its legality in a setback for campaigners who argue it could curb Internet freedom. The Cybercrime Protection Act was passed in 2012 to stamp out online scourges such as fraud, identity theft, spamming and child pornography, but its implementation was suspended after coming under challenge from various groups.

Philippine Supreme Court says law on online libel constitutional

The Philippine Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a controversial cybercrime law penalising online libel is constitutional, amid claims it is intended to curb Internet freedom in one of Asia's most freewheeling democracies. The court said a section of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 "which penalises online or cyber libel is not unconstitutional", spokesman Theodore Te said. However the ruling would only cover the original sender of the allegedly libellous material and not the recipients, Te said.

Canadian Press News Alert: One charged in Elliot Lake mall roof collapse

ELLIOT LAKE, Ont. - Ontario Provincial Police have charged one person in the June 2012 fatal collapse of a mall roof in Elliot Lake, Ont. Police say 64-year-old Robert Wood, an engineer who inspected the Algo Centre Mall, faces two counts of criminal negligence causing death and one count of criminal negligence causing bodily harm. More to come.

B.C. judge rules British "ski buddy" not liable for Colorado man's death

VANCOUVER - A widow who says her late husband's "ski buddy" failed him during a tragic accident in British Columbia five years ago has lost her bid for compensation from a court. Colorado resident Mark Kennedy fell into a tree well — an area of deep and loose snow around the tree's base — and suffocated Jan. 11, 2009 while skiing on a mountain near Blue River, B.C., about 580 kilometres northeast of Vancouver. His widow, Elizabeth Ann Kennedy, launched a lawsuit against her husband's ski partner, Adrian Coe of Britain, seeking compensation.

Muslim group demands apology from Harper, chief spokesman over comment

OTTAWA - A major Canadian Muslim group is demanding an apology from Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his chief spokesman for a comment it says linked the organization to a terrorist group. The National Council of Canadian Muslims has filed a notice of libel in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice that accuses Jason MacDonald of acting maliciously when he made the comment earlier this month. The council had criticized the inclusion of a controversial rabbi in Harper's delegation that went to the Middle East last week.

Lords defeat UK plans to penalise 'annoying' behaviour

British government plans for new laws to penalise 'annoying' behaviour were defeated in the House of Lords on Wednesday by critics who warned they might be used against anybody from carol singers to nudists. Unelected members of the upper house of parliament voted 306 to 178 to amend plans for new court-imposed injunctions to prevent nuisance or annoyance (Ipnas), the breach of which could lead to a prison term. The measure is now likely to return to the House of Commons, the elected chamber of parliament, and will undergo further debate in both houses.

Lords defeat UK plans to penalise 'annoying' behaviour

British government plans for new laws to penalise 'annoying' behaviour were defeated in the House of Lords on Wednesday by critics who warned they might be used against anybody from carol singers to nudists. Unelected members of the upper house of parliament voted 306 to 178 to amend plans for new court-imposed injunctions to prevent nuisance or annoyance (Ipnas), the breach of which could lead to a prison term. The measure is now likely to return to the House of Commons, the elected chamber of parliament, and will undergo further debate in both houses.
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