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April arguments, day by day

Here are brief summaries of the 11 cases the Supreme Court will hear in the weeks of April 18 and April 25. The calendar can be found here. The Court granted review of these cases on January 7 or 14. These will be the final arguments of the Term, unless an emergency case arises.

Monday, April 18
04-603 – Grable & Sons Metal Products v. Darue Engineering – scope of right to transfer a quiet title action from state to federal court.
04-6964 – Johnson v. California – proof needed to satisfy the first step in showing that peremptory challenges to potential jurors in a criminal case were based on racial bias

Tuesday, April 19
04-637 – Bradshaw v. Stumpf – test for voluntariness of guilty plea; also, obligation to vacate guilty plea if a later prosecution of another individual for a role in the crime produces inconsistent evidence.
04-563 – Mayle v. Felix – application of one-year habeas filing deadline when the state inmate amends a petition to include a new claim

Wednesday, April 20
03-1237 – Merck KGaA v. Integra Lifesciences – clarification of 1984 federal law giving drug researchers a “safe harbor” against patent infringement claims
04-169 – Graham County Water District v. U.S. – definition of filing deadline for claims under the False Claims Act for retaliatory discharge

Monday, April 25
03-10198 – Halbert v. Michigan — constitutionality of Michigan procedure of denying a free lawyer to aid a poor individual who has pleaded guilty but wants to appeal. (Same issue as in Kowalski v. 26th Judicial Circuit Court, 03-407, dismissed in December for lack of standing)
04-6432 – Gonzalez v. Crosby – right of prison inmates to seek to reopen their cases in federal court by filing Rule 60-b motions without being barred for second effort to obtain habeas relief

Tuesday, April 26
Consolidated cases, one hour: 03-1230 – American Trucking Associations v. Michigan Public Service Commission, and 03-1234 – Mid-Con Freight Systems v. Michigan Public Service Commission – constitutionality of state fee on trucks operating on state roads.
04-514 – Bell v. Thompson – authority of federal appeals court to withdraw an opinion dismissing a habeas petition six months after the mandate was to have been issued

Wednesday, April 27
04-368 – Arthur Andersen LLP v. U.S. – challenge, in case growing out of Enron scandal, to conviction for persuading employees to destroy documents to disrupt a federal securities investigation