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American POWs of the 1991 Gulf War saw a $959 million judgment awarded them for pain and suffering thrown out by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Friday. The damages, awarded under a federal statute allowing lawsuits involving countries that supported terrorists, were voided on grounds that the statute only allows such suits if they are filed against agents of foreign states not acting on their government’s behalf … Torching lawyers’ cars earned Allan Wesley Parmelee 24 years in prison. Parmelee, convicted of setting fire to vehicles belonging to his ex-wife’s lawyer and another attorney, got the unusually lengthy sentence for what the judge called “malicious, evil, villainous conduct” … The smoking ban is bad for the booze biz, say Ireland’s pub operators, claiming revenues are down 12 percent to 15 percent since the country’s workplace smoking ban went into effect March 29. Publicans and their helpful friends in the tobacco industry are urging authorities to “look carefully at the facts” before making any decisions on public smoking … A suit filed on behalf of thousands of disabled WWII veterans of Canada says their government owes them $2.5 billion, thanks to its mismanagement of their financial affairs since the war. The suit has been tied up in legal wrangling since 1999; government lawyers will go to court June 15 to try to put an end to the proceedings … The ‘Absolut Hunk’ — actor Jason Lewis, who posed for a fictional Absolut vodka ad on an episode of “Sex and the City” — is suing the vodka maker for allegedly promoting the ad as real without his permission. Lewis says he avoids work requiring nudity — unfortunate in this case, since the fake ad shows him in the buff, save for a strategically placed vodka bottle. –Lydia Markoff

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