April 1, 2015 nº 1,612 - Vol. 11

"Dubito ergo cogito; cogito ergo sum.“
(I doubt, therefore I think; I think therefore I am)

  Rene Descartes

Read Migalhas LatinoAmérica in Spanish every Tuesday and Thursday. Visit the website at www.migalhas.com/latinoamerica


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  • Top News

More companies block employees from filing suits

Companies are quietly eliminating a long-held employee privilege: the right to band together to take the boss to court. As employers try to stem the costs of lawsuits, more companies are requiring workers to bring serious complaints to arbitration and forbidding employees from participating in class actions. The percentage of companies using arbitration clauses to preclude class-action claims soared to 43% last year from 16% in 2012. Fueling the trend is a 2011 Supreme Court ruling that upheld such agreements. The result, say lawyers on both sides of the issue, has been a notable decline in actions that accuse corporations of wage theft, discrimination, and other systemic violations of labor laws. Employers prefer arbitration because it is usually less expensive and faster than litigation.

Amnesty condemns 'alarming rise' in death sentences

Human rights group Amnesty International has said there was an "alarming" increase in death sentences around the world in 2014. In its annual review of death penalty use across the planet, it said some countries were using it in response to "real or perceived" security threats. More than 500 more death sentences were issued than in 2014, mainly because of sharp rises in China and Nigeria. However, excluding China, the number of actual executions reportedly dropped. Apart from China, Amnesty said the world's top executioners in 2014 were: (1) Iran - 289 executions announced officially, and at least 454 not acknowledged by the authorities, (2) Saudi Arabia - at least 90, (3) Iraq - at least 61, and (4) the US – 35.

Law schools and industry show signs of life, despite forecasts of doom

Law school enrollment has plummeted to the lowest level in decades. If a bottom has been reached, is now a good time to go to law school? Some say no — not now and possibly never. The legal market, they argue, has fundamentally changed, meaning that many of the legal jobs of years past are gone forever. Several new studies, however, point to signs of vigorous life in the legal job market, at least toward the higher end. The most compelling argument against going to law school is a structural one. Yes, the job market goes in cycles and we may be at the beginning of an upswing, but, the argument goes, the market itself has been transformed. For one, corporate in-house legal teams are growing, replacing the work that outside firms once did. Microsoft, for example, has more than 500 in-house lawyers. More significant, automation is hurting small practitioners and eating up the bread-and-butter work of big firms, like discovery review. Big firms are quite profitable, but in exchange for the profitability, there is more hard work and uncertainty about job security, even for partners. Still, it is hard to see lawyers going away in the United States economy. Whether or not you like it, their importance is greater now in terms of filling needs for compliance and regulation. So, there will be disruptions, but this is likely to be a case of lawyers shifting from law firms to corporate departments and compliance becoming its own industry. Solo practice, meanwhile, will become more difficult because of automation. Again, these changes are likely to hit students at lower-tier schools harder than those graduating from the top schools. Twenty years from now, whether the economy is up or down, there will still be lawyers, and plenty of them.


In a new article, Paulo Eduardo Penna and Juliana Carvalho de Azevedo, lawyers at Lobo & Ibeas Advogados, discuss a new type of investment fund regulated by CVM (the Brazilian SEC). According to them, the FIA-MA aims to encourage investments in mid-market companies and foster new IPOs. (Click here)

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  • Crumbs

1 - Robin Williams restricted use of his image for 25 years after his death - click here.

2 - Pomerantz Law Firm Announces the Filing of a Consolidated Amended Securities Class Action Complaint Agains Petrobras - click here.


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  • MiMIC Journal

China to begin deposit insurance in May

China on Tuesday detailed a plan to launch a deposit-insurance system in May, a long-awaited move that is aimed at better disciplining its lenders and their customers. Deposit insurance also is seen as a prelude to freeing up government-controlled interest rates on bank deposits. The step could be taken as soon as this year—and eventually allowing money to flow freely into and out of the country.


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  • Historia Verdadera

Ojo por ojo?

Clearstream suspendió la liquidación de cualquier tipo de valores en el mercado de Argentina luego de que la filial local de Citibank perdiera su capacidad de desarrollar este tipo de operaciones en el país, según la agencia Reuters. (Presione aquí)

De la tierra al mar

México posee zonas de abundantes depósitos de minerales en su lecho marino, lo que despertó ya el interés de empresas transnacionales por realizar las primeras explotaciones de estos recursos, esto marcará el inicio de la transición de la actividad minera de la tierra al mar. (Presione aquí)


Uber, la compañía que ofrece transporte de pago entre particulares como alternativa al taxi, presentó una queja formal contra España ante la Comisión Europea. La firma estadounidense, que funciona a través de una aplicación en los teléfonos móviles, alega que la legislación española y, sobre todo, la decisión judicial que interrumpió su actividad el pasado diciembre lastran sus intereses y los de los consumidores . (Presione aquí)


La aerolínea brasileña Gol Linhas Aereas SA reestructurará su red de vuelos internacionales este año debido a la fortaleza del dólar, informó este martes a periodistas el presidente ejecutivo Paulo Kakinoff en una conferencia telefónica. La moneda brasileña, el real, se ha desplomado más de 18% frente al dólar en lo que va de 2015, lo que ha elevado el costo de los viajes de los brasileños a Florida, un destino internacional clave para Gol en los últimos dos años.

  • Brief News

Arkansas lawmakers pass 'religion freedom' bill

Arkansas has approved a religious freedom bill similar to one that has caused a storm of protest in Indiana. Critics of the law say it could be used to discriminate against gay people because it gives business owners a legal defense based on their faith. The measure now requires the signature of Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson, but it already has his backing. A law signed last week in Indiana sparked a national outcry and calls to boycott the state. Apple, Yelp, Angie's List, the White House and Warren Buffett were among its critics. (Click here)

Opposition wins Nigeria elections

Former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari has become the first opposition candidate to win a presidential election in Nigeria. Since independence from Britain in 1960, there have been numerous coups and most elections have been rigged. Of course in a close election there will be many voters who are not pleased with this outcome but the whole process is a sign that democracy is deepening in Nigeria. The poll has once again brought to the surface dangerous religious and regional differences and there is still a threat of violence.

Iran nuclear talks deadline will be extended by a day

Progress has been made in talks on Iran's nuclear program, Russian and Iranian officials say. Negotiations between six world powers and Iran will resume on Wednesday, overrunning a deadline for a deal. Russia's foreign minister said "all key aspects" had been agreed, but western officials said there were still outstanding disagreements. World powers want to restrict Iran's nuclear program in return for sanctions relief.

French Senate overturns fines for prostitutes' clients

France's Senate has rejected a planned 2013 law penalizing people who pay for sex, and has chosen to maintain the offence of soliciting. Although prostitution is legal in France, soliciting in public and pimping are not. The National Assembly voted 16 months ago to impose a €1,500 ($1,600) fine on clients, shifting the criminal burden from prostitutes. The upper house's decision to scrap the fine will now go back to the assembly. Social affairs minister Marisol Touraine said that Monday night's vote was "absolutely unbelievable and contemptuous towards women". But Joelle Garriaud-Maylam, a conservative senator, argued that the offence of soliciting was a useful resource for the authorities. "To help these women, you first of all have to identify them."

Peru's prime minister Ana Jara deposed over spy row

Peruvian Prime Minister Ana Jara was forced to step down after losing a vote of confidence in Congress on Monday.Jara was censured over allegations that Peru's intelligence agency had for years gathered information on leading figures in business and politics.

EU milk quota system is abolished

EU milk quotas have been scrapped after more than three decades of efforts to prevent overproduction. The system is ending to allow EU dairy businesses to compete with international rivals in supplying fast-growing markets in Asia and Africa. The Irish Republic, the Netherlands and Germany are all expected to increase production sharply. UK farmers have said it could lead to further falls in the price they receive for their milk. The ending of quotas was both a challenge and an opportunity for the EU. Farmers argued the lifting of quotas helps only big food companies and the largest milk producers, whose efficiency allows them to operate with slim margins.

Israel law center petitions DOJ to prosecute Hamas

The Israel Law Center released a complaint on Friday asking the US Department of Justice to prosecute several Hamas leaders for their involvement in the attack on Israel's Ben Gurion International Airport (BGA) last summer. The rocket attacks between Israel and Palestine that occurred this past summer lead to the deaths of hundreds of civilians, and compelled the UN to institute a commission to investigate human rights violations. While the conflict is primarily between Israel and Palestine, the complaint asserts that American jurisdiction over the attacks exists under 18 USC § 37 as the attack was deliberate against an international airport, and several of the victims were US nationals. The Israel Law Center argues that Hamas "targeted missiles at BGA for the express purpose of killing or injuring civilians and disrupting international flight service in and out of Israel," and, as a result, severely obstructed American air-carriers from continuing their business practices.

Dutch royal family to return Nazi looted art

The Dutch royal family has said it will return a painting from its collection thought to have been looted by the Nazis during World War Two. The painting, by Joris van der Haagen, had been bought by Queen Juliana from a Dutch art dealer in 1960. The palace said an investigation looked at tens of thousands of art works in the House of Orange's collection. Officials have contacted the heirs of the original owner, who was not named, to arrange its return. No further details were given, due to privacy concerns.

HP sues former Autonomy leaders for $5.1bn, alleging fraud

Hewlett-Packard (HP) is suing Autonomy co-founder Mike Lynch and former chief financial officer Sushovan Hussain for about $5.1bn. HP is suing for alleged fraud. Separately, Lynch and the former management of Autonomy plans to sue HP for more than £100m, alleging "false and negligent statements". US-based HP bought software firm Autonomy in 2011 for $11bn. HP later wrote down the value of its purchase by three quarters.

Oops: world leaders' personal data mistakenly released

With a single keystroke, the personal information of 30 world leaders was mistakenly released by an official with Australia's immigration office. Passport numbers, dates of birth and other personal information of the heads of state attending a G-20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, were inadvertently emailed to one of the organizers of January's Asian Cup football tournament. The information was obtained as a result of an Australia Freedom of Information request. Given that low risk, the immigration officer recommended that the world leaders not be made aware of the breach — a decision that could be at odds with privacy laws in some of the countries. It's not clear whether the immigration department subsequently informed world leaders.

Thailand PM seeks to end maritial law

Thailand Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha on Tuesday announced plans to revoke the country's long-standing Martial Law Act BE 2457 (1914), calling on King Bhumibol Adulyadej for approval. The country has been under the rule of martial law since then-General Prayuth staged a military coup last year. If his plan is approved Section 44 of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand (Interim), BE 2557 (2014) would be in force in the nation, allowing the prime minister to maintain sweeping powers. The authority granted to Prayuth in the act will allow him to bypass the seeking of legislative approval for his actions.

Maldives parliament approves measure to eliminate political party membership for inmates

The legislative body of Maldives, the People's Majlis, amended the Prison and Parole Act on Monday to remove an inmate's right to membership in a political party. The measure is known as the Bill on Amendment to the Prison and Parole Act, Act No. 14/2013. Critics of the measure claim the law was passed to separate former president Mohamed Nasheed from his political affiliations and remove him from politics. The law passed by a vote of 42-2 in the nation's 85-seat parliament. Allegedly, the People's Majlis is considering another measure to eliminate Nasheed's allowance and security, which are provided to him in his capacity as former president.

  • Daily Press Review

Buhari praises Jonathan in landmark Nigeria poll
Al Jazeera, Doha, Qatar

U.K. university cancels conference debating Israel's right to exist
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

Bosses sign letter supporting Tories
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Muhammadu Buhari beats Goodluck Jonathan
CNN International, London, England

Zayn Malik demo leaked by Naughty Boy was 'OLD One Direction song'
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Ambra Battilana also accused her former lover of rape in Italy four years ago
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Midnight deadline comes and goes but there is still hope of a nuclear deal with Iran
EuroNews, International news, Ecully Cedex, France

Nigeria's Buhari defeats Jonathan by 2.57m votes in historic election
France 24, Issy-les-Moulineaux, France

Turkey's largest party today is the 'Erdo?an-must-be-stopped party': Author
Hurriyet Daily News, (Liberal, English-language), Istanbul, Turkey

Andrew Getty dead: Grandson of oil tycoon J Paul suffers 'blunt-force trauma' at LA home
Independent The, London, England

Major Ukrainian TV provider drops Russian channels
Moscow News The, Independent, Moscow, Russia

Plans to turn Leaning Tower of Pisa into luxury hotel
Telegraph The, Conservative daily, London, England

'Being likened to Gone Girl is a great thing but no one's bought my book - yet!'
Telegraph The, Celebrity news, London, England

Nation to join AIIB only if treated equally: Mao
China Post, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

Chaebol Chiefs Sneak Out of Revealing Salaries
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Iran nuclear talks miss deadline Russia says key aspects agreed
Hindustan Times, New Delhi, India

Mango production better despite inclement weather
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Tokyo's Shibuya Ward adopts ordinance to recognize same-sex unions
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

SKorean man charged in knife attack on US envoy
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

Ukraine President cancels trip over protests in eastern Ukraine
Straits Times, Pro-government, Singapore

Pitch invader slapped with $5000 fine for WACA run
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

Indiana governor wants changes to religious-objections law
Taiwan News, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

McDonald's starts table service in Germany
The Economic Times, Business, Mumbai, India

World's oldest person Misao Okawa dies in Japan at 117
Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto, Ontario

Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell hospitalized in Los Angeles
Globe and Mail The, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Liberty Reserve Brought Down By 'Joe Bogus': How The Feds Arrested Arthur Budovsky
International Business Times, Business news organization, New York, U.S

Nicaragua's Future Canal a Threat to the Environment
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

New York court dismisses foreclosure lawsuit against HSBC
Reuters, Business News, New York, U.S

Nigeria's Buhari praises Jonathan for peaceful handover
Reuters, World News, New York, U.S

Former Crown prosecutor still earning over $100,000 after leaving ministry
Toronto Star, Toronto, Ontario

Nigeria's Buhari hails poll victory
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England


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