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Opinion Digests

Criminal – Substitution Of Counsel – Timely Motion (access required)

Where defendant, on the first day of his trial for cocaine distribution, moved to replace his counsel of three months and for a continuance to allow new counsel to become acquainted with the case, the district court did not err ...

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Tort – Defamation – Limited-Purpose Public Figure – Private Individual – Child-Custody Dispute (access required)

Although a widely publicized child custody battle became a “public controversy” because of the mother being jailed for refusing to reveal the child’s whereabouts, the child’s grandparents, plaintiffs in this defamation suit, did not become “limited-purpose public figures,” but remained ...

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Criminal – Habeas Corpus – Independent State Ground – Plea Agreement (access required)

Although the North Carolina state court considered on the merits petitioner’s claim that his plea of guilty to second-degree murder was unconstitutional because his sentence did not comport with his plea agreement, the state court clearly held that petitioner’s motion ...

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Jurisdiction – Long-Arm Statute – Packaging Manufactured In Virginia (access required)

Although defendant, a family-owned California tea company, contends that when it negotiated two packaging contracts with the plaintiff manufacturer, whose principal place of business is in Virginia, the California company dealt only minimally with the manufacturer’s Virginia employees and that ...

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Partnerships – Release Of Partnership – General Partner's Release – Tortious Interference – Former In-House Lawyer (access required)

Where an in-house lawyer for a Texas oil company and the company settled their Texas state court litigation over the lawyer’s termination, the release in that case of a partnership made up of a wholly owned subsidiary of the Texas ...

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Contract – Substantial Performance – Conveyor Belt (access required)

Where plaintiff agreed to construct, deliver and install an electric conveyor system for defendant by a certain date, but plaintiff missed the deadline for installation by several weeks and the conveyor system never was fully functional, plaintiff did not substantially ...

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Criminal – Sentencing – Error In Criminal History – Resentencing (access required)

Where petitioner’s trial counsel failed to object in 1991 to the trial court’s erroneous calculation of petitioner’s criminal history, and the net result of application of the current guidelines likely would be a lower sentence for petitioner, the petitioner’s earlier ...

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