"Corporations Decry Official's Detainee Screed"

So far, corporations aren't following Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Charles Stimson's suggestion that they boycott firms representing Guantanamo detainees:

"It’s a rare day when law firms get called out for their pro bono work.

"But that’s exactly what happened when Pentagon official Charles “Cully” Stimson rattled off a list of firms representing Guantánamo Bay detainees — such as Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw; Jenner & Block; WilmerHale; and Covington & Burling — predicting that businesses would shun their outside counsel for making the companies foot terrorists’ legal bills.

“'I think, quite honestly, when corporate CEOs see that those firms are representing the very terrorists who hit their bottom line back in 2001, those CEOs are going to make those law firms choose between representing terrorists or representing reputable firms. And I think that is going to have major play in the next few weeks. And we want to watch that play out,' said Stimson in an interview with Federal News Radio Jan. 11.

"And it has played out, but not in quite the way Stimson expected. Instead of Fortune 500 companies such as Microsoft, DaimlerChrysler, and Pfizer dumping their outside counsel in a fit of political protest, firms have largely gotten support from corporate America and from within their partnership ranks."

You can find a list of firms & detainees represented in this same article. Scroll down to table titled "For Detainees, a Load of Legal Firepower." a Load of Legal Firepower


Paralegal & military lawyer ordered not to discuss Gitmo claims

We earlier noted this paralegal's actions in reporting abuse; now she's been told not to talk to the press:

"A paralegal and a military lawyer who brought forward allegations about prisoner abuse at the Guantanamo Bay detention center have been ordered not to speak with the press, lawyers and a military spokeswoman said Saturday.

"Marine Lt. Col. Colby Vokey, who represents a detainee at the U.S. naval base in eastern Cuba, filed a complaint with the Pentagon last week alleging that abuse was ongoing at the prison. He attached a sworn statement from his paralegal, Sgt. Heather Cerveny [PDF link], in which she said several Guantanamo guards bragged in a bar about beating detainees, describing it as common practice.

"Muneer Ahmad, a civilian defense lawyer for Omar Khadr, a Canadian detainee whose military counsel is Vokey, said that Vokey and Cerveny were ordered Friday by the U.S. Marines not to speak with the press.

"Cerveny, reached by telephone late Saturday, said she disagreed with the order but also would abide it. She declined to comment further."


Paralegal reports beatings by Gitmo guards

And to this news report, we say a hearty "good work"!

"Guards at Guantanamo Bay bragged about beating detainees and described it as common practice, a Marine sergeant said in a sworn statement obtained by The Associated Press.

"The two-page statement was sent Wednesday to the Inspector General at the Department of Defense by a high-ranking Marine Corps defense lawyer.

"The lawyer sent the statement on behalf of a paralegal who said men she met on Sept. 23 at a bar on the base identified themselves to her as guards. The woman, whose name was blacked out, said she spent about an hour talking with them. No one was in uniform, she said."


"German Legal Assistant Wins Henri Dunant Award"

Excellent news!

"Miss Wibke Timmermann -- a 30 year-old German legal assistant working in a defence team at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) -- is to receive the Henri Dunant Award 2006 for her international law dissertation, specializing in hate speech and war propaganda.

"She carried out this work after studying at the University Centre for International Humanitarian Law (CUDIH) in Geneva. The young German woman has been working for several weeks as a paralegal within the team representing Aloys Ntabakuze in the 'Military I' trial."


Paralegals in Fiji!!

Another "who knew?" news article, this time from the Fiji Times:

"THIRTY-THREE community workers will learn about the Family Law Act and the newly established Family Court in a training program from May 22-26.

"The training program has been organised by the Fiji Women's Rights Movement and will be held at the Pacific Theological College in Suva.

"Movement director Virisila Buadromo said between 2000 and 2001 they had trained 23 community paralegals on human rights issues."