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John Kane

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John Kane
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the District of Colorado
Title:   Senior judge
Position:   Seat #2
Appointed by:   Jimmy Carter
Active:   12/16/1977 - 4/8/1988
Senior:   4/8/1988 - Present
Preceded by:   Alfred Arraj
Succeeded by:   Lewis Babcock
Personal History
Undergraduate:   University of Colorado, B.A., 1958
Law School:   University of Denver Law, J.D., 1960

John L. Kane, Jr. is an Article III federal judge for the United States District Court for the District of Colorado. He joined the court in 1977 after being nominated by President Jimmy Carter. Kane is serving on senior status.

Early life and education

Kane graduated from the University of Colorado with his bachelor's degree in 1958 and later graduated from the University of Denver College of Law with his juris doctorate degree in 1960.[1]

Professional career

  • Law clerk, Seventeenth Judicial District of Colorado, 1960-1961
  • Private practice, Brighton, Colorado, 1961-1963
  • Deputy district attorney, Seventeenth Judicial District of Colorado, 1961-1963
  • Private practice, Denver, Colorado, 1964
  • Public defender, Adams County, Brighton, Colorado, 1965-1967
  • Deputy director, Peace Corps, Eastern Region of India, Calcutta, India, 1967-1968
  • Country representative, Peace Corps, Turkey, 1968-1969
  • Instructor, Metropolitan State College, Denver, Colorado, 1973-1974
  • Private practice, Denver, Colorado, 1970-1977
  • Adjunct professor, University of Denver College of Law, 1978-1988
  • Visiting lecturer in law, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, 1989
  • Miller distinguished visiting professor of law, University of Denver College of Law, 1990-1996
  • Adjunct professor, Colorado School of Law, 1996-present[1]

Judicial career

District of Colorado

On the recommendation of Senators Gary Hart and Floyd Haskell, Kane was nominated by President Jimmy Carter on November 2, 1977 to a seat vacated by Alfred Arraj. Kane was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on December 15, 1977 on a Senate vote and received commission on December 16, 1977. Kane assumed senior status on April 8, 1988.[1] Kane was succeeded in this position by Lewis Babcock.

Notable cases

"Copyright Troll" case (2011)

     United States District Court for the District of Colorado (Righthaven LLC, v. Leland Wolf, et al., 1:11-cv-00830-JLK)

The law firm Righthaven LLC ran into legal troubles in September 2011, when Judge Kane handed down a ruling stating that Righthaven did not sufficiently own the copyrights in one of the cases they have filed suit over. The firm, called by some the world's first 'copyright-troll,' practices by purchasing legal and intellectual rights--in this instance, only the bare right to sue--from newspapers; Righthaven then searches the web for instances of possible infringement of the underlying copyrights, and will ultimately bring a suit if it finds such a case. The firm often does not own any other rights, including the ability to reprint the work itself, and Judge Kane held that such a single-minded interest in the copyright--simply the right to sue--is not sufficient to maintain the suit. In his opinion, he wrote that:
A party with a bare right to sue may file numerous infringement actions of questionable merit with the intention of extorting settlement agreements from innocent users.[2][3]
Judge Kane's ruling on the case before him could, potentially, affect over 50 cases filed by 'Righthaven' in the state of Colorado.[2][4]

Hot dog fraudster case (2009)

     United States District Court for the District of Colorado (United States, v. Arnold Zaler, 08-cr-89-JLK)

Judge Kane was the presiding judge of a hot dog salesman who was convicted of swindling investors. On November 7, 2009, the judge sentenced Arnold Zaler to fifteen years in federal prison for his role in the case. The judge denied a request from Zaler's attorney to give a lesser sentence due to known mental health conditions on the basis of his past criminal history.[5]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Alfred Arraj
District of Colorado
Seat #2
Succeeded by:
Lewis Babcock