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Courthouse Steps: Maslenjak v. United States Update

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Teleforum Wednesday, July 05, 02:00 PMFederalist Society Teleforum Conference Call

At the close of the Bosnian civil war, Divna Maslenjak sought refuge for herself and her family in the U.S. due to fear of persecution regarding their Serbian identity in modern-day Bosnia and the threat of reprisal against her husband, who she claimed had evaded military conscription in the Bosnian Serb militia. After the family was granted refuge and Maslenjak became a U.S. citizen, a U.S. court convicted Maslenjak’s husband Ratko on two counts of falsifying claims regarding Serbian military service on U.S. government documents, since Ratko had in fact served in the Serbian military. When Ratko applied for asylum to avoid deportation, Divna Maslenjak admitted to lying about her husband’s military service and was charged with two counts of naturalization fraud for previously denying that she had given false information to a U.S. official. At her trial, jurors were told that a naturalization fraud conviction could be carried out for false claims in Maslenjak’s application process, even if the claims did not affect whether she was approved. Convicted on both counts, Divna Maslenjack faced two years of probation and lost her citizenship. The Sixth Circuit affirmed her conviction, claiming that naturalization fraud did not require proof of a material false statement.

Please join us as Vikrant Reddy, a Senior Research Fellow at the Charles Koch Institute, discusses the potential impact of the recent Supreme Court ruling and the main question of the case: whether immaterial false statements should be a basis for withdrawing an individual’s citizenship.

Featuring: 

  • Vikrant P. Reddy, Senior Research Fellow, Charles Koch Institute

Courthouse Steps: Hernandez v. Mesa Decided

International & National Security Law Practice Group Teleforum Thursday, June 29, 12:00 PMFederalist Society Teleforum Conference Call

On Monday, the Supreme Court vacated and remanded Hernandez v. Mesa to the Fifth Circuit. The case involved a cross-border shooting and a Bivens claim.

In July of 2010, a 15-year-old adolescent named Sergio Adrian Hernandez Guereca and his friends were playing along a concrete structure on the border of the U.S. and Mexico. When Jesus Mesa, Jr., a U.S. Border Patrol Agent arrived, he detained one of the youths on the border, and shot and killed Hernandez, who was hiding behind a pillar of the Paso Del Norte Bridge on the Mexican side of the border. Hernandez’s parents sued Agent Mesa under the Fourth and Fifth Amendment for the use of unlawful and disproportionate force. Agent Mesa argued that the Fourth and Fifth Amendments did not apply because Hernandez was not a U.S. citizen.

The District Court found for Agent Mesa, while the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the Fifth Amendment protections against deadly force applied but the Fourth Amendment did not, and that Agent Mesa should not receive qualified immunity.

Steve Giaier of the House Committee on Homeland Security will join us to discuss the Court’s decision to vacate and remand and what it means for the case going forward.

Featuring:

  • Steven Giaier, Senior Counsel, House Committee on Homeland Security

National Intelligence Reform - Podcast

International & National Security Law Practice Group Podcast
Benjamin Powell, David R. Shedd, Matthew R.A. Heiman June 14, 2017

During the presidential campaign, there were calls for changes to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), a federal agency created in response to the events of 9/11 to ensure that the seventeen organizations that make up the intelligence community act in a coordinated fashion. Following President Trump’s inauguration, former Senator Dan Coats was appointed as the Director of National Intelligence (DNI). There has also been significant media coverage around the relationship between the intelligence community and the President. During this Teleforum, we were joined by intelligence experts to discuss the relationship between the President and the intelligence community, whether the ODNI is in need of reform, and the top priorities of DNI Coats. 

Featuring: 

  • Benjamin Powell, Partner, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP
  • David Shedd, Advisory Board Member, Beacon Global Strategies LLC
  • Moderator: Matthew R. A. Heiman, Vice President, Corporate Secretary & Associate General Counsel, Johnson Controls

Litigation Update: Davis v. Guam - Podcast

Civil Rights Practice Group Podcast
J. Christian Adams April 13, 2017

On March 8, Judge Frances M. Tydingco-Gatewood of the District Court of Guam struck down a Guam law that permitted only those who meet the definition of “Native Inhabitants of Guam” to vote in a future status plebiscite. This decision has been met with opposition from elected officials, protests at the federal courthouse, public rallies, and now an appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Supporters of the plebiscite are forcing a reexamination of the role of the United States on this strategically important island and opponents contend they are doing so without giving all citizens a voice in the process. What did the district court decide, and what does the reaction say about the rule of law and respect for the Constitution?  Christian Adams joined us to discuss the latest in Davis v. Guam.

Featuring:

  • J. Christian Adams, Election Lawyer Center

Life Technologies Corp. v. Promega Corp. - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 3-21-17 featuring Howard J. Klein
Howard J. Klein March 21, 2017

On February 22, 2017, the Supreme Court decided Life Technologies Corp. v. Promega Corp. Promega Corporation owned four patents for technology used in kits that can conduct genetic testing and was the exclusive licensee of a fifth patent. In 2010, Promega sued Life Technologies Corporation (LifeTech) for allegedly infringing on these patents.  A jury found in favor of Promega but the district court nevertheless ruled for LifeTech, concluding that Promega had failed to present evidence sufficient to sustain the favorable jury verdict. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed that judgment, holding that the four Promega patents were ultimately invalid but agreeing that LifeTech had infringed the fifth patent and remanding to the district court for a determination of damages.  In the course of its ruling, the Federal Circuit concluded that LifeTech’s supplying of a single, commodity component of a mulit-component invention had exposed LifeTech under federal law to damages liability on worldwide sales.

The question before the Supreme Court was whether the Federal Circuit erred in holding that supplying a single, commodity component of a multi-component invention from the United States exposes a manufacturer to liability for worldwide sales. 

By a vote of 7-0, the Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Federal Circuit and remanded the case. In an opinion by Justice Sotomayor, the Court held that the supply of a single component of a multicomponent invention for manufacture abroad does not give rise to liability under Section 271(f)(1) of the Patent Act, which prohibits the supply from the United States of "all or a substantial portion of the components of a patented invention" for combination abroad. Justice Sotomayor’s opinion was joined by Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Kagan. Justices Thomas and Alito joined the majority opinion as to all but Part II-C. Justice Alito filed an opinion concurring in part and concurring in the judgment, in which Justice Thomas joined. Chief Justice Roberts was recused.

To discuss the case, we have Howard J. Klein who is Attorney at Law at Klein, O’Neill & Singh, LLP.