Canadian Lawyer

October 2019

The most widely read magazine for Canadian lawyers

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28 www.lawtimesnews.com LAW TIMES BRIEFS White substance on car was bird poop, not cocaine, police find Police arrested and later released a man after a white substance suspected to be cocaine was found to be bird poop. According to CNN, the man was pulled over for speeding and the white substance on the car "tested positive for cocaine at first." However, dash camera footage shows the college student saying it was bird droppings, and his account was later confirmed by lab testing, CNN said. Mural showing mating bunnies criticized by Larry Bird's lawyer A street artist says she will alter her mural of basketball star Larry Bird after objections from Bird's lawyer, the Indianapolis Star reported. Artist Jules Muck painted a version of a famous photograph of Bird, but depicted him with a series of humorous tattoos, including two mating bunnies and a spiderweb, similar to other paintings she has done. But according to the IndyStar, "Bird's representatives — including lawyers — have been talking and trying to come to an agreement" on how to remove the tattoos from the mural. "Larry's position is he has elevated himself from where he began to where he is now through a lot of hard work. He has developed a brand that is marketable and he needs to protect that brand," Bird's lawyer, Gary Sallee, told IndyStar. "The mural, as originally painted, was a departure from that brand." Sallee told the newspaper that "all his friends and 98 per cent of his players are tattooed," but Bird "doesn't want to be seen as a tattooed guy." Bangladesh grants rivers the same legal status as humans The Supreme Court in Bangladesh said this summer that the country's rivers have "the legal status of living entities," Reuters reported. "Water is likely to be the most pressing environmental concern of the next century," the court ordered, calling for rivers to be protected "at all costs," according to Reuters. New Zealand, India, Colombia and the U.S. state of Ohio have considered similar initiatives, the report BIZARRE BRIEFS said, but activists have warned that the change would make "riverside communities more vulnerable to eviction." No laws to prevent microscopic 'water bears' from being left on the moon Following the crash of a spacecraft, a law professor says humans can leave anything except weapons on the moon. A spacecraft called Beresheet crashed into the moon earlier this year, and it was carrying thousands of tardigrades, a hardy organism that's often called a "water bear," reported Wired. When asked what humans are allowed to leave on the moon, Frans von der Dunk, a professor of space law at the Nebraska College of Law at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln, told Live Science that many of the guidelines on the moon aren't legally binding. "The baseline rule of space law is permissiveness," he told Live Science. "Unless anything is one way or another specifically prohibited or conditioned, it would be considered allowed." Florida lawyer erroneously told clients marijuana was legal, and the clients were arrested A lawyer told his clients they could legally use and grow marijuana if it was for a medical purpose, even before the state legalized medical marijuana, The Florida Times-Union reported. "If a patient can prove to a law enforcement officer that cannabis is the safest medication available to treat their diagnosed condition, they are NOT subject to arrest," his website said at the time, according to the newspaper. The lawyer also reportedly issued clients "identification cards" related to their cannabis status. When two clients were arrested in 2015, the lawyer "wrote to the Florida Sheriff's Association telling them his unique and false interpretation of the law, and he opposed efforts to legalize medical marijuana because, he said, it was already legal," the newspaper said. The clients ended up with three years' probation, a $15,000 fine and 100 hours of community service, and one of them lost her nursing licence, the report said. The lawyer, who lost his licence, was ordered to pay the clients about $370,000. The Florida Supreme Court cited the lawyer's "incompetence and extremely serious harm," the newspaper said. School officials marked student's head with Sharpie, says lawsuit A Texas school used a permanent marker to "fill in" a student's haircut design that violated the dress code, according to a lawsuit. The lawsuit, reported by CNN, says the officials "laughed as they took many minutes to color 13-year-old J.T's scalp which took many days of scrubbing to come off." The fade haircut featured a stripe that was shaved into his hair as a design. The student was given the option of the permanent marker or a suspension, which would have affected his ability to run track, said CNN. Randall Kallinen, the family's lawyer, told CNN that the school never tried to notify the family before colouring their son's scalp. Ohio university tries to trademark 'The' A trademark application filed to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office requests a standard character trademark for the title "The Ohio State University" that would cover items such as T-shirts, baseball caps and hats, the Associated Press reported, citing The Columbus Dispatch. That would trademark the word "The" when used as part of the school's name on university merchandise, according to the report. Son — named after his father — cannot set up competing firm with similar name Two lawyers named George Sink are fighting over the names of their law firms. Son George Sink Jr. opened George Sink II Law Firm, after being fired from his father's firm, George Sink P.A. Personal Injury Lawyers, the Post and Courier reported. But a federal judge says the son may not use that name, according to the newspaper. While Sink Jr. is not barred from practising law under his own name, "he must do more to differentiate himself between him and [his father]" in advertising for legal services, the newspaper reported, citing the judge.

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