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2/1/2007 - February 2007 - News



            The Alabama Supreme Court denied an application for rehearing in the sweepstakes gambling case.  The Supreme Court had held that the sweepstakes operations at the Birmingham Race Track were slot machines and therefore unlawful under the Criminal Code.  Operators requested the Supreme Court to reexamine its opinion, but the Supreme Court declined to do so without comment.  The case is therefore at an end and consequently, the sweepstakes and similar operations will cease or face prosecution.  The Jefferson County District Attorney who prosecuted the appeal, David Barber, and other District Attorneys have said they will enforce the law if the various gambling operations do not voluntarily close down.  There is a chance legislation will be introduced to change the law in order to permit these operations.


            On December 16, 2006, The Birmingham News reported the killing of an unborn child as a result of her mother being wounded by a bullet was considered a homicide.  This is the first case we are aware of that has applied The Brody Act.  The Brody Act was passed in the 2006  legislative session, amending the Alabama Criminal Code to recognize the unborn child as a "person" within the meaning of criminal laws.


            As a result of the new Democrat leadership in the United States Congress, H.R. 3 has already passed the House and would expand taxpayer funding of embryonic stem cell research.  President Bush has earlier opposed embryonic stem cell research and it is expected he would veto this legislation.  The vote will be short of the ability to override a presidential veto.  This bill is indicative of the view of life by the new Congress.  This is true, even in light of the breaking news that stem cells may be obtained from amniotic fluid, the liquid that cushions the baby in utero, and the placenta, its afterbirth.



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