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Attorney general to address violent crime in Tennessee visit

Attorney general to address violent crime in Tennessee visit

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is scheduled to speak with Tennessee law enforcement officials about efforts to fight violent crime, nearly two weeks after he said prosecutors should bring the toughest charges possible against most suspects. Sessions’ speech is set for Thursday morning in Memphis, a city beset by gang activity, drug crime and gun violence. One of the poorest big cities in the country, Memphis saw a record 228 homicides last year. Statistics show the overall crime rate throu…
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1 killed, dozens injured in caste violence in northern India

Police rushed forces to a north Indian town on Wednesday and arrested dozens of people to stop clashes that erupted when upper caste Hindus fired on Dalits belonging to the lowest rung of India’s caste hierarchy. Police officer Aditya Mishra said one person was killed and dozens injured in the violence Tuesday. Angry Dalits set the homes of some upper caste Hindus and police vehicles on fire in retaliation. Mishra said the Dalits were attacked while they were returning from a rally led by their…
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Germany detain 9 men, 4 tied to violent extremism

Police in Berlin have raided six sites across the German capital and detained nine people, some with links to Islamic extremism. In a statement Wednesday, police said the men were wanted on suspicion of organized drug dealing. Police said arrest warrants existed for three of those detained and a fourth person was due to appear before a judge Wednesday. Authorities consider the four to be “part of the Islamist spectrum willing to use violence.” The other five men are still under investigation. P…
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Miami Wear Orange: Gun Violence Awareness Day

Join Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and other community partners for Miami Wears Orange, a family event…
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Costs rise in suit over immigration patrols in metro Phoenix

Costs rise in suit over immigration patrols in metro Phoenix

A racial profiling case involving former Sheriff Joe Arpaio that has already cost taxpayers in metropolitan Phoenix nearly $66 million over the last nine years is about to get more expensive. Officials gave preliminary approval Monday to $26 million in additional spending to cover the costs of complying with a court-ordered overhaul of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, which in 2013 was found to have found Latinos were profiled during the former sheriff’s immigration patrols. The overhaul w…
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Miami Official Who Compared Weed to Pedophilia Cited for Sex Harassment in 2011

Barnaby Min, Miami’s deputy city attorney, was widely ridiculed last week for comparing legalizing weed to pedophilia at a meeting at city hall. But it turns out he’s an even worse messenger for that offensive claim than most anyone knew. Min himself was caught sexually harassing a female city auditor by emailing her the word “penis” multiple times in 2011, according to emails New Times obtained via a records request. Yet he kept his job as the city’s then-zoning administrator and later rose through the ranks in the city attorney’s office. The previously unreported case calls into question whether Min should be the person making decisions about whether children with cancer or elderly Alzheimer’s patients are able to receive medicine. In 2011, Min was working as the city’s zoning director. That January, he sent multiple emails spelling out the word “penis” to a young, female city auditor whom Min had previously asked out to lunch and to “social events,” according to city documents. The auditor then filed a complaint about Min, and in February the city’s office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Programs (EODP) sustained allegations of sexual harassment against him. The EODP forwarded the findings to Min’s supervisor, Orlando Toledo, who was then the director of the building department. It is unclear, however, if Min received discipline for his actions. According to his LinkedIn profile, he began working as an assistant city attorney in 2008 before moving on to serve as the city’s zoning administrator in 2010. He kept his job until February 2013, when he was “forced out” due to “mounting conflicts over his strict interpretation of the city zoning code,” according to a Miami Herald article from that year. He then worked as the director of contract management at Jackson Health Systems for eight months before he was hired as deputy city attorney in October 2013. Min and city spokesperson Diana Gonzalez did not respond to New Times’ calls and emails sent Friday requesting comment about Min’s harassment case. Via email Sunday, City Attorney Victoria Mendez vouched for Min’s judgment as a lawyer. “Mr. Min was hired as a deputy city attorney based on his legal skills and qualifications,” she said. “I am unaware of what discipline, if any, was imposed against Mr. Min by his prior zoning supervisor, when he was in the zoning department and not this office. I am confident in his legal acumen and demeanor as a deputy city attorney.” The 2011 ordeal began when the auditor was assigned to audit a series of impact fees for a building permit that she believed had been incorrectly refunded. In the chain of emails, which were attached as exhibits to the complaint, Min responded privately to the woman’s claims by asking, “Why do you sound so mean in your emails?” The co-worker wrote to the EODP that she thought the response was inappropriate. “Spare me,” she wrote back to Min. “I don’t understand why we are still on this issue??? I am very much over impact fees… for now! You are an attorney, can you please explain to your staff the difference between the old and new Impact Fee Ordinance and how each has certain requirements and a developer can just pick and choose which parts to apply to their development.” “People are reading your emails,” Min responded. “Penis.” He then added a smiley-face emoticon. The auditor wrote in her EODP complaint that she then called Min and told him to stop. “After receipt of the inappropriate email, I called Mr. Min and told him not to send emails of this nature to me,” she wrote. “He did not appear to be concerned and veered the conversation towards other city zoning business.” Three days later, on January 21, Min sent a blank email that contained nothing but a lowercase letter “p.” He then sent another email with an “e.” Then an “n,” an “i,” and an “s.” “I began receiving the first of five emails from Mr. Min,” the victim later wrote to the EODP. “Each email contained one letter, spelling out a distasteful and inappropriate word. I did not reply to any of the emails nor did I make any attempt to contact Mr. Min. The emails were very upsetting and I left the office shortly after.” The complaint says that the next Monday, the auditor emailed her supervisor and asked to have a meeting about the messages. “I want this inappropriate behavior to stop,” the victim wrote to the EODP. Last week, Min made headlines after bizarrely relating medical marijuana to pedophilia in a meeting of the city’s Planning, Zoning and Appeals Board. Despite the fact that Florida voters overwhelmingly legalized medical cannabis in a constitutional referendum last year, Min and City Attorney Victoria Mendez claim the city should ban dispensaries outright because marijuana remains federally illegal. In an attempt to defend this position, Min claimed that the city allowing marijuana would be akin to legalizing child rape, because — bear with Min for a second — if the city or state tried to legalize something that was federally illegal (i.e., pedophilia), the feds could still arrest people for it. Both Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado and Commissioner Francis Suarez have since said they disagree with Min’s position and support dispensaries coming to the city. But as with the sexual harassment case six years ago, it’s unclear whether Min will face repercussions for his actions. The victim whom Min harassed asked to be kept anonymous, out of fear that publishing her name would lead to re-victimization or retaliation from the city.
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Texas adoption agency ‘religious refusal’ closer to law

Texas Republicans pushed the state closer to a law that allows publicly-funded foster care and adoption agencies to refuse to place children with non-Christian, unmarried or gay prospective parents because of religious objections. The Senate gave final approval early Monday, sending it to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott for his consideration. The “Freedom to Serve Children Act” has received a late push in the Republican-dominated Legislature ahead of the May 29 end of the session. Conservatives hav…
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Mail Clerk/Admin Assistant Needed for Growing Miami Law Firm

Pacin Levine, P.A. is a rapidly expanding South Florida Law Firm. We are seeking a Full-Time Mail Clerk/Administrative Assistant for its Miami location.
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Counsel Juan Azel Joins Hunton & Williams LLP’s Global Banking Practice in Miami

MIAMI–(BUSINESS WIRE )–Hunton & Williams LLP announces the expansion of its global banking and corporate practice with the arrival of Juan Azel as counsel in Miami. For nearly 20 years, Azel has represented financial institutions as general counsel or as outside counsel on regulatory and compliance, financial crime risk management, and internal investigations and enforcement matters, with an emphasis on the U.S. Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), anti-money laundering (AML), and economic sanctions l…
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In a neighborhood scarred by violence, cops and kindergartners share lunch, and more

In a neighborhood scarred by violence, cops and kindergartners share lunch, and more

The first time a group of uniformed Miami-Dade police officers walked into the cafeteria at Poinciana Park Elementary, the students asked teachers and administrators what had gone wrong. Is somebody in trouble? Is there going to be an arrest? In the Lincoln Fields housing project near Liberty City, where many Poinciana Park students live, police officers are often a sign there’s been a shooting. “I remember that first visit nobody talked to the cops,” said Principal Amrita Prakash. “Nob…
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Supreme Court will avoid the fight over North Carolina's voter law

Supreme Court will avoid the fight over North Carolina’s voter law

Opponents of strict voter-ID laws won a closely watched, but perhaps temporary, victory Monday, as the Supreme Court declined to revive a four-year-old North Carolina measure. Rejecting an unusual plea from the North Carolina General Assembly, the court said it would not hear the North Carolina case in the term that will start in October. It leaves intact an appellate court ruling striking down the North Carolina law, though it also leaves unsettled some crucial issues that are likely to come b…
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Supreme Court rejects appeal over NC voter ID law

The Supreme Court shut the door Monday on North Carolina Republicans’ effort to revive a state law that mandated voter identification and scaled back early voting, provisions that a lower court said improperly targeted minority voters. The justices left in place last summer’s ruling by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals striking down the law’s photo ID requirement to vote in person, which the court said targeted African-Americans “with almost surgical precision.” The measure, approved in 201…
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Rhode Island could study, delay legal marijuana debate

Rhode Island lawmakers who aren’t ready to legalize marijuana might try to study it instead. The House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote Tuesday on a bill that would create a legislative commission to study the effects of legalizing pot for recreational use. The 15-member commission would review how marijuana legalization has affected residents of states such as Colorado and Washington and how it’s affected fiscal conditions in those states. The group would report its recommendations bac…
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Recreational marijuana would be legal in NJ under new bill

Marijuana could be grown, sold and used in New Jersey under new legislation introduced Monday in the state Senate. Democratic state Sen. Nicholas Scutari, the bill’s sponsor, said at a news conference that the measure has little chance of being enacted under Republican Gov. Chris Christie, who opposes legalization efforts. But Scutari said he’s introducing the measure now as a way to lay the groundwork for it to be enacted by the next governor. He pointed to states like Colorado that have succe…
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Most hard drugs smuggled through legal border crossings

Most hard drugs smuggled through legal border crossings

Amid the daily traffic of workers, shoppers and truck drivers crossing the border on March 21, a customs officer in Nogales noticed a driver acting nervously. An officer with Customs and Border Protection inspects a van at the DeConcini Port of Entry in Nogales, Ariz. Statistics show 81 percent of the hard drugs caught at the border from 2012-2016 were stopped at ports of entry. Most hard drugs smuggled through legal border crossings By Curt Prendergast Arizona Daily Star The Miami County Repub…
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The Latest: North Carolina defends gay-marriage recusal law

The Latest on a federal appeals court’s consideration of a challenge to a North Carolina law allowing magistrates with religious objections to refuse to perform same-sex marriages (all times local): 1:30 p.m. An attorney for North Carolina says a state law letting magistrates refuse to perform same-sex marriages ensures the state complies with the law on gay marriage while respecting officials’ religious beliefs. Special Deputy Attorney General Olga Vysotskaya de Brito defended the law Wednesda…
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Court asked to revive challenge to gay-marriage recusal law

An attorney for North Carolina on Wednesday defended a state law that lets magistrates refuse to perform same-sex marriages, telling a federal appeals court that the policy accommodates officials’ religious beliefs while complying with the law on gay marriage. A special deputy attorney general for North Carolina told a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that lawmakers worked hard to strike a fair balance with the law by ensuring that willing magistrates from nearby commu…
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Inexplicably, Ultra Miami and Ultra Europe are Suing Each Other

copyrightlawsuittrademarkultraultra europeultra miamiultra music festivalultra worldwide Ultra Music Festival exploded from its South Florida home where it got its start in 1999 to the global phenomenon we know it as today. From shows in Asia, Africa, South America, the Caribbean and more, Ultra has encompassed the globe with massive headliners and even larger audiences. However, a dispute between the head honchos of the brand and their European counterparts may be the next big lawsuit in the …
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Domestic violence hotline: Immigration-linked calls increase

Domestic violence hotline: Immigration-linked calls increase

The nation’s most prominent domestic violence hotline reports a sharp increase in calls from abuse victims struggling with issues related to their immigration status. The National Domestic Violence Hotline, established by Congress in 1996 and partly reliant on federal funding, says in its newly released annual report that it responded to 323,660 phone calls, texts and online contacts in 2016. Of these calls, 7,053 evoked immigration-related issues — up nearly 30 percent from 2015. Katie Ray-J…
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Plan to crack down on deadly gang violence clears NY Senate

New York lawmakers are hoping to battle deadly MS-13 gang violence with a proposal that could keep gang members behind bars longer. The Republican-led Senate approved a bill Monday to increase penalties for crimes connected to street gangs and create new crimes for gang involvement. Supporters say the bill is especially necessary in light of a string of killings on Long Island this year of mostly young people. At least 11 violent deaths since September in blue-collar communities Brentwood and C…
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Immigrants being held in Oregon jail staged hunger strike

Immigrants being held in Oregon jail staged hunger strike

Pro-immigrant activists and the legal director of the ACLU of Oregon said Friday that officials appear to be breaking state law by holding people for federal immigration authorities at an Oregon jail where several of the detainees this week ended a hunger strike over what they called horrible conditions. They say the deal between the Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facility, or NORCOR, and a federal agency violates a 1987 Oregon law prohibiting law officers in Oregon from spending public d…
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Trump warns he might not obey Guantánamo, pot provisions in new spending law

President Donald Trump told Congress Friday that he might release detainees held at the Guantánamo Bay prison for suspected terrorists, despite legislation that prohibits transfers of prisoners. He also said he would not feel bound by a restriction in a new spending law that prohibits spending money to enforce federal marijuana laws in states where the drug is legal for medical purposes. Trump noted that the spending bill Congress passed this week contained restrictions on transfers of Guantá…
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Florida criminals who use Bitcoins could now face money laundering charges

Criminals who use the virtual currency known as Bitcoin can be convicted of money laundering under a Florida law passed by lawmakers late on Friday. Both houses approved the bill, which now heads to the desk of Gov. Rick Scott for approval. Lawmakers approved the measure after a Miami judge last year threw out the criminal case against a man accused of selling $1,500 worth of bitcoins he was told was to be used to purchase stolen credit-card numbers online. “Cyber criminals have taken advanta…
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U.S. Top Court Deals Setback to Miami in Predatory Lending Suits

U.S. Top Court Deals Setback to Miami in Predatory Lending Suits

Writing for the court, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer said Miami had the legal standing to sue the banks but needed to present more evidence that the …
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Miami Lawsuit Against Mortgage Lenders Survives Supreme Court Review

WASHINGTON –   The Supreme Court handed a partial victory to the city of Miami Monday, ruling it was authorized to bring ambitious lawsuits alleging Bank of America Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co. engaged in financial-crisis era discriminatory lending that led to urban blight and falling property values. The court, however, in a 5-3 ruling, said Miami in future proceedings will have to establish that the banks caused direct harm to the city, a standard that could prove challenging. T…
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Paralegal

Robert Half once again was named first in our industry on Fortune® magazine’s list of “World’s Most Admired Companies.” (March  1,  2017) In 2016, Robert Half was named a Top Corporation for Women’s Business Enterprises by WBENC, the nation’s leader in women’s business development. © 2017 Robert Half International Inc. An Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/Disability/Veterans….
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U.S. top court deals setback to Miami in predatory lending suits

N. Writing for the court, liberal Justice Stephen Breyer said Miami had the legal standing to sue the banks but needed to present more evidence that …
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Indiana court ends lawyer’s legal quest for Pence emails

The Indiana Supreme Court is denying a request from an attorney who wanted his public records case against Vice President Mike Pence to be given a fresh look amid revelations that the former Republican governor used a private AOL email account to conduct state business. The court’s ruling effectively ends the two-year effort by Indianapolis attorney William Groth, a Democrat, for documents and emails from Pence’s tenure as governor, his lawyer Gregory Bowes said Monday. Groth initially sued aft…
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Report faults commissioner's absences amid jail violence

Report faults commissioner’s absences amid jail violence

The head of New York City’s jail system spent 90 days out of the city last year even amid violence problems at the troubled Rikers Island jail complex, the city Department of Investigation said Friday. Investigators found Commissioner Joseph Ponte took his city-owned vehicle to Maine in violation of guidelines and other Department of Correction officials misused their agency vehicles with trips to Cape Cod, the Hamptons and other destinations. Commissioner of Investigations Mark Peters said the…
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Report faults commissioner’s absences amid jail violence

The head of New York City’s jail system spent 90 days out of the city last year even amid violence problems at the troubled Rikers Island jail complex, the city Department of Investigation said Friday. Investigators found Commissioner Joseph Ponte took his city-owned vehicle to Maine in violation of guidelines and other Department of Correction officials misused their agency vehicles with trips to Cape Cod, the Hamptons and other destinations. Commissioner of Investigations Mark Peters said the…
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Court summons 4 Penarol players about Copa Lib violence

Four players from Uruguay club Penarol were summoned to court on Friday to give testimony about the violence at the Copa Libertadores match with Brazilian club Palmeiras this week. Penarol club lawyer Gaston Tealdi confirmed to The Associated Press the four players were Nahitan Nandez, Matias Mier, Junior Arias, and Yeferson Quintana. He gave no other details. The match on Wednesday in Uruguay ended in chaos across the field as players chased and taunted each other. Some 30 fans were arrested, …
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Gubernatorial candidates consider broader marijuana laws

Gubernatorial candidates consider broader marijuana laws

The Trump administration recently warned about the potential for marijuana to lead to other drug use, but candidates for New Jersey governor are considering embracing efforts to authorize recreational use in the state. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly’s recent comment that marijuana is a possibly dangerous gateway drug comes after Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he is “definitely not a fan” of expanded use. Nonetheless, New Jersey’s Democratic-controlled Legislature plans to move forw…
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QUICKLINKS Media Inquiries Give to Miami Law Alumni & Development Submit a Story / Faculty Focus PROSPECTIVE STUDENTS J.D. Request Information LL.M. Request Information How to Apply STAY CONNECTED PUBLICATIONS Miami Law Magazine See All Miami Law Publications Clinical Professor Rebecca Sharpless, Director of the Immigration Clinic, published an article “Cosmopolitan Democracy and the Detention of Immigrant Families” in the New Mexico Law Review.  Professor Sharpless researches and writes in the…
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Law partners in Odebrecht, Panama Papers scandals get bail

A court in Panama on Friday ordered the release on bail of two partners at a law firm involved in last year’s “Panama Papers” scandal set off by the leak of thousands of documents related to offshore accounts. Jurgen Mossack and Ramon Fonseca Mora of the Mossack-Fonseca firm were arrested in February in connection with a bribery scandal involving Brazil’s state-run oil company, Petrobras. The two are accused of money laundering for allegedly setting up offshore accounts to move bribes. The cour…
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Oklahoma governor looked into case as favor to sister-in-law

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin asked a member of her legal staff to look into the manslaughter case of a former Tulsa reserve deputy as a favor for her sister-in-law, newly released emails reveal. The governor’s office released 14 pages of emails this week showing Fallin’s discourse with sister-in-law Jane Vanfossen — a friend of the jailed officer Robert Bates’ daughter — and Jennifer Chance, her then-deputy general counsel, over the case, the Tulsa World (http://bit.ly/2occbP2 ) reported. The emails indicate Vanfossen had forwarded a plea of concern from Bate’s daughter to Fallin. “As a tax paying, law abiding citizens (sic) we have been thoroughly disappointed in the bias, influenced by a media with no ethical code, that appears in our court system,” Bates’ daughter Leslie McCrary wrote. “I won’t elaborate on the specifics but would ask for you to please review the statute that is keeping our Dad in jail …” An email from the governor noted Chance had researched the case and would contact Bates’ family. Chance later emailed Bates’ daughter and said the governor couldn’t intervene in the case, but advised that her father could have recourse regarding medical care and treatment under federal laws. In March, a Tulsa media report alleged Chance resigned as deputy general counsel after Fallin learned that Chance had recommended her husband, attorney Derek Chance, to the Bates family. Chance’s March 8 resignation letter states she left her post “to pursue other opportunities.” But the emails indicate Fallin was aware Derek Chance would represent Bates after receiving an email of gratitude in September 2016. “We hired Derek in June of 2016 and as of today this is where we are. Nowhere. UGH! Thank you again,” McCrary wrote. Spokesman Michael McNutt told the Tulsa World in a response to a question of Fallin’s interest in the case that the governor “treated this matter the same as similar requests that she receives by referring it to her general counsel’s office.” Bates was found guilty of second-degree manslaughter for the fatal shooting of Eric Harris in April 2015. Bates alleged he mistook his revolver for his Taser when Harris had tried to run away from a Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office undercover gun buy. Oops, you haven’t selected any newsletters. Please check the box next to one or more of our email newsletters and submit again. Oops, you didn’t provide a valid email address. Please double-check the email field and submit again.
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Criminals who use Bitcoin targeted under proposed Florida law

Criminals who deal in bitcoins in Florida could soon be busted for money laundering. Florida lawmakers are poised to pass a bill that will add “virtual currency” to the state’s money-laundering statute, a change hailed by law enforcement although frowned upon by some enthusiasts of bitcoins. The proposed law was crafted after a Miami judge tossed a criminal case against a Miami Beach man accused of selling $1,500 worth of bitcoins he believed was to be used to buy stolen credit-card numbe…
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