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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Contract – False Claims Act – Water Services – Disclosure Statement (access required)

In this suit by a qui tam plaintiff, a former water purification specialist at Camp Ar Ramadi in Iraq who alleges that defendant government contractor failed to test and treat the camp water and dispensed contaminated water while billing the ...

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Employment Discrimination – Bankruptcy Filing – Claim Omission – Judicial Estoppel (access required)

Although a pro se plaintiff says she did not know she needed to include her employment discrimination claim against her employer when she filed for bankruptcy, she still is judicially estopped from pursuing the claim in Richmond U.S. District Court ...

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Immigration – Temporary Protected Status – ‘Continuous’ Presence (access required)

The 4th Circuit dismisses a petition for appeal filed by three Honduran siblings who seek to overturn an administrative final order that rejected their request for Temporary Protected Status. Petitioners Jorge Ramos Cervantes, Paola Ramos Cervantes, and Daniel Ramos Cervantes, ...

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Creditor’s Rights – Farm Produce – PACA Trust (access required)

A seller of farm produce has a trust on sale proceeds under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act, but the 4th Circuit remands the case for reconsideration of the amount the district court required for payment. Two sellers of perishable agricultural ...

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Criminal – Sentencing – Guidelines Presumption – Illegal Entry (access required)

A district court’s comment that it was “obligated” to give a defendant a guidelines sentence unless there was a reason for departure smacks of an “impermissible presumption,” the 4th Circuit says, and it remands for resentencing. Appellant Dario Mendoza-Mendoza, a ...

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Civil Rights – Foster Child – Sexual Abuse History – Social Worker Immunity (access required)

The 4th Circuit says “deliberate indifference” by social workers to a child’s welfare may lead to liability under 42 U.S.C. § 1983; because this is a new standard, the defendant social worker in this case has qualified immunity from a ...

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Criminal – Sentencing – Felon In Possession – ‘Crime Of Violence’ – N.C. Law (access required)

The 4th Circuit upholds defendant’s sentence for possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, which the district court calculated by counting his prior North Carolina conviction for larceny from the person as a “crime of violence” under the federal ...

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Criminal – Crack Cocaine Possession – Traffic Stop (access required)

An officer did not violate defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights when, after smelling and possibly observing marijuana when he stopped a Mercury sedan with multiple windshield cracks, the officer asked defendant passenger to step out of the car and found drugs ...

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