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Bartenders don’t cause drinkers’ injuries — drunks do, ruled the Australian High Court in the case of a woman who sued a bar when she was run over by a car after a day-long drinking session. She said they should’ve cut her off sooner. But Chief Justice Murray Gleeson asserted, “There are many forms of excessive eating and drinking that involve health risks, but, as a rule, we leave it to individuals to decide for themselves how much they eat and drink. There are sound reasons for that … ” Accounting firm Arthur Andersen, found guilty in June 2002 of obstructing an expected SEC investigation of its client Enron, saw its conviction upheld Wednesday by a Houston jury. Andersen’s appeal to the 5th Circuit claimed improper admission of evidence, improper jury instructions and improper refusal to allow Andersen to present evidence countering government presentations … A ban on religious activity by Jehovah’s Witnesses was upheld by the Moscow City Court Wednesday, based on a 1997 Russian law enshrining Orthodox Christianity as the country’s predominant religion and allowing courts to ban religious groups considered to incite hatred or intolerant behavior. A lawyer for the defense said the decision means “religious freedom has just turned back to where it was in Soviet times” … A so-called “judicial hellhole” — namely, the state of Mississippi, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, due to the frequency of huge jury awards there — is set to become more business-friendly now that Gov. Haley Barbour has signed a new law capping damage amounts. But not everybody’s happy. Said one member of the Mississippi Trial Lawyers Association, “The governor has made it clear that he places corporate profit above the safety of Mississippi families.” –Lydia Markoff

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