FREE PRESS — Exploiting a computer network's imperfect security, a hacker unlawfully gains access to private company messages and other documents and copies and forwards them to an Internet information site, where some are posted. The company seeks to find out who the hacker was. If the Internet site is found to be a journalistic publisher under California law, it may be able to ignore the company's subpoena, which would be unenforceable, notes attorney Jeffrey D. Neuburger in MediaShift.
WHISTEBLOWERS — " If he had kept his mouth shut and
his head low, Bradley Birkenfeld would be a free man today. He
didnt, so now the former UBS Swiss banker wears an electronic
bracelet on his ankle and, beginning in January, will spend
three years and four months in a federal penitentiary," notes columnist Ann Woolner for Bloomberg News.
WHISTLEBLOWERS — On a 22-14 vote, the California State Senate today approved legislation
to provide University of California employees who report waste, fraud
and abuse with the same legal protections available to other state employees, reports the bill's author,
Senator Leland Yee (D-San
WHISTLEBLOWERS — Bradley C. Birkenfeld, the former UBS banker who helped break the secrecy of the Swiss banka
practice that not only sustained uncounted spy novels, but was widely
considered inviolableis facing years in prison after blowing the whistle on tax cheating via offshore accounts.
As reported by David S. Hilzenrath for the Washington Post,
PUBLIC RECORDS — A former staff lawyer for the Connecticut Freedom of Information Commission, beset by personal problems and clashing with police for the third time this year, had his side of an incident that led him to be tased by two officers backed up by . . . a publicly released police surveillance video.
OPEN COURTS — Henry Samueli, the co-founder of Broadcom Corp., is fighting to keep
the public out of a pending hearing before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court
of Appeals in which he is seeking to reinstate a plea deal that he
reached last year with prosecutors, reports Amanda Bronstad for the National Law Journal.
FREE PETITION — "Berkeley
may take great pride as a champion of free speech and civil rights," writes Matthai Kuruvila for the San Francisco Chronicle, "but
an unusual campaign has been under wayled by most of the city's top
elected officialsto stop residents from signing a citizen's petition."