Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange

Harper Lee
Associated Press


A federal appeals court order has cleared the way for same-sex marriages to begin next week in Alabama. The three-judge panel from the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange's request for an extended stay.

U.S. District Judge Callie Granade last month ruled that two Alabama laws prohibiting the recognition of same-sex marriages unconstitutional. Granade put a hold on her order until Monday to let the state appeal.

The former CEO of two non-profit Alabama health clinics was arrested yesterday on federal charges.

The Birmingham U.S. Attorney's Office says Jonathan Wade Dunning was arrested on multiple counts of fraud, conspiracy, money-laundering and other charges.

Dunning was at one time CEO of both Birmingham Health Care and Central Alabama Comprehensive Health in Tuskegee. Prosecutors say Dunning left those clinics to run a private business, and are accusing him of funneling substantial amounts of government money from the non-profit health operations into his own company.

China is Alabama’s second biggest trading partner. That economic relationship is the focus of a new series of events at the Birmingham International Center.  The Center will host various cultural, educational, and outreach events between now and May. A large part of the focus is on business and trade with China. Alabama does two and a half billion dollars’ worth of business with China every year.

Governor Robert Bentley is telling Attorney General Luther Strange that the state has limited resources to fight gambling.   The governor, in a January 13th letter to Strange, says the primary duty rests with local law enforcement.

The governor says he was responding to a memo that Strange sent district attorneys and local law enforcement officials suggesting that state police would be a "valuable resource" to them in trying to shut down gambling operations.  Strange said he expected them to enforce gambling laws.


Alabama state lawmakers will gather in Montgomery this week. APR’s Pat Duggins reports on orientation week for the state house and senate…

Alabama’s newly elected senators and representatives will hear presentations about the legislative process, state budgets and the role of a legislator. Members will also take a mandatory training course on the requirements of the state ethics law.

Attorney General Luther Strange says a phone scam involving jury duty is spreading to more Alabama counties and it often targets the elderly.

The scam involves someone pretending to be with law enforcement or with the local court system. They will call a person and threaten to arrest them for missing jury duty. Then the caller says the matter can be settled without an arrest if the person agrees to purchase a pre-paid credit card and pay an amount over the phone. The attorney general says the court system doesn't work that way. It usually contacts people in writing.

Mike Saechang / Flickr

Twenty-one states are asking a federal appeals court to overturn provisions of Maryland's gun-control law that ban 45 assault weapons and limit gun magazines to 10 rounds.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey led the coalition in filing a friend-of-the-court brief in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, last week.

The brief says the law violates the Second Amendment right to keep firearms in homes for self-protection.

council of state governments

A lead prosecutor says ethics charges were brought against House Speaker Mike Hubbard because a grand jury found evidence of crimes and not for political reasons.

Acting Attorney General W. Van Davis issued a statement Tuesday responding to accusations by Hubbard that the case is political.

Davis says he has no political allegiances to anyone, including Attorney General Luther Strange, who appointed him.


The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a legal challenge to Alabama's property tax system.

The Supreme Court's decision Monday means one of the nation's lowest property tax rates remains intact.

Attorneys representing families in Lawrence and Sumter counties had challenged the fairness of Alabama's property taxes, particularly the low rates on timber and farm property. They lost in U.S. District Court and at the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Then they asked the Supreme Court to review the case.

A deputy state attorney general is asking for the appointment of an independent investigation into accusations that he interfered with a public corruption investigation.

Deputy Attorney General Sonny Reagan sent a letter Monday to his boss, Attorney General Luther Strange, saying he did nothing wrong.

Reagan asked for Strange or Gov. Robert Bentley to appoint an independent person to look into the accusations against him as well as a misconduct complaint Reagan previously filed against Matt Hart, who's a key prosecutor in the corruption probe.

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange says the state will benefit from a court ruling that could mean billions of dollars in damages for the Gulf oil spill in 2010.

Strange says a judge's decision that oil giant BP caused the spill through reckless conduct means the company will pay additional civil penalties.

Strange says Alabama will receive part of that money, although the exact amount isn't clear.

Strange commented Thursday after a federal judge in New Orleans ruled BP bears most of the responsibility for the Gulf oil spill.

Glenn Baeske/Huntsville Times

The Alabama attorney general's office is asking a judge to dismiss criminal charges against former state Sen. Lowell Barron and an aide.

Prosecutors filed the request late Monday in DeKalb County. A judge hadn't ruled Tuesday morning.

The state cites a series of court rulings against the prosecution in asking the judge to throw out charges against Barron and former aide Jill Johnson.

Grand jurors indicted Barron and Johnson last year on campaign finance and ethics charges accusing them of misusing campaign funds to help Johnson pay off a home loan from Barron.

The Democratic challenger to Attorney General Luther Strange accuses him of being an absentee officeholder more interested in cracking down on bingo than violent crime.

Strange says his opponent, Democrat Joe Hubbard, has a campaign largely financed by gambling interests.

With more budget problems likely ahead for the state, some legislative leaders say they're open to the idea of a compact with the Poarch Band of Creek Indians.

The tribe currently offers bingo games, which resemble slot machines, but would need an agreement with the state to add table games or another location.

Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh says he's not aware of any ongoing discussions but that everything is on the table as the state seeks long-term budget solutions.

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange is praising a federal appeals court ruling against an important provision in President Barack Obama's health care law.

Strange says he is proud to have joined other Republican attorneys general who opposed the law before an appeals court in Washington.

The divided court ruled Tuesday that federal subsidies to help millions of low and middle-income people pay insurance premiums apply only in states that set up their own insurance markets under the law. A federal court in Virginia unanimously ruled the opposite way.