Daily Briefs

ABA Legal Fact Check spotlights financier’s travel woes, the law behind revoking visas

Bill Browder, an American-born international investor who travels on a British passport, is an outspoken critic of Russian leader Vladimir Putin and champion of the Magnitsky Act, a 2012 U.S. law aimed at punishing Russians officials involved in corruption. The law was passed following the mysterious 2009 death of Browder’s Russian lawyer while in custody.

Earlier this week, Browder tweeted that the U.S. State Department canceled his ESTA travel waiver, an action which triggered strong bipartisan criticism on Capitol Hill and from media pundits from both the left and the right. A day after canceling his waiver, the U.S. government reversed itself, saying Browder’s revocation was an administrative mistake.

Browder’s experiences spotlight an aspect of the U.S. Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, which strips federal courts of jurisdiction to review certain decisions “specified” by statute “to be in the discretion of the Attorney General or Secretary of Homeland Security.” A new ABA Legal Fact Check posted today by the American Bar Association explores that aspect of the law and how it played out in the Browder situation.

ABA Legal Fact Check debuted in August and is the first fact check website focusing exclusively on legal matters. The URL for the new site is www.abalegalfactcheck.com. Follow us on twitter @ABAFactCheck.


Wayne County Probate Court to close at noon Nov. 7, all day Nov. 8

The Wayne County Probate Court will close at noon on Tuesday, Nov. 7 and all day on Wednesday, Nov. 8 for mandatory employee training. The court will reopen at 8 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 9.

Interfaith Religious Freedom Conference

Detroit Mercy Law is partnering with the J. Reuben Clark Law Society Detroit Chapter and the Michigan Catholic Conference to host an Interfaith Religious Freedom Conference from 7-9 p.m. Nov. 7 at Ss. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church, which is adjacent to Detroit Mercy Law. The event welcomes people of all faiths to explore civic and legal challenges to religious freedom, and practical measures that may be taken to support religious freedom in daily life. The keynote speakers are the Most Reverend Allen H. Vigneron, Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit, and Elder Von G. Keetch, General Authority Seventy and Executive Director of the Public Affairs Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Other featured speakers are Elizabeth Clark, Associate Director for the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University Law School; Christopher Lund, Associate Professor at Wayne State University Law School; and Frank Ravitch, Professor and Walter H. Stowers Chair of Law and Religion at Michigan State University Law School. Although the event is free, complimentary parking will only be offered to ticketholders who register at irfc-conference.eventbrite.com.


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