Protest: As thousands of demonstrators planned rallies today to protest the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United, a federal judge in Manhattan rejected a request from one group that wanted to convene outside the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Courthouse, The New York Law Journal reports. The judge refused an injunction that would have forced the government to issue a permit for the protest. Protestors have declared today "Occupy The Courts."
Blocked: Vermont cannot shut down a nuclear reactor when its license expires in March, a federal judge has ruled. The New York Times said the judge concluded the federal government, and not Vermont, can regulate nuclear safety.
Flipped: The Wall Street Journal profiles FBI agent David Makol, a veteran investigator who specializes in convincing people to gather evidence against friends and associates. Makol played a key role in this week's arrests of several analysts on insider trading charges.
Merged: Law firm mergers are back in full swing, The Wall Street Journal reports, after slow growth during the recession. Firms are vying for big chunks of the $100-billion corporate law industry, the Journal said. "It's now a buyer's market, not a seller's market for the first time in 20 years," one consultant said.
Shuttered: U.S. Justice Department officials late Thursday were investigating the apparent cyber attack against the agency's web page, which was offline for hours after prosecutors announced the take down of one of the world's largest file-sharing services. More coverage here.
Settled: Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. has agreed to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to several dozen victims to resolve phone and e-mail hacking allegations, The New York Times reports. The actor Jude Law was expected to receive $200,000 in the settlement. The Wall Street Journal has this piece on the settlements.
Probed: Prosecutors in Italy are scrutinizing the final moments of the cruise ship Costa Concordia, examining, among other things, the ship's abrupt u-turn. The ship's captain was formally suspended Thursday. In other shipping news, a cargo ship collided today with two other vessesls in the Bosporous straight off central Istanbul. There was no effect on traffic in the Bosporous, one of the world's busiest shipping lanes.