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Date Resource Read it at:
Nov 30, 2014 Justice Is Swift as Petty Crimes Clog Courts: Cases Adjudicated in Minutes or Less, Often Without Lawyers

QUOTE: Years of aggressive policing tactics and tough-on-crime legislation have flooded the American court system with misdemeanor cases—relatively small-time crimes such as public drunkenness, loitering or petty theft. The state courts that handle such charges often resemble assembly lines where time is in short supply, according to judges and lawyers who work in the courts. Many poor defendants, despite their right to court-appointed legal counsel, don’t get lawyers, and those who do often receive scant help in the rush to resolve cases.

Wall Street Journal, The (WSJ)
Dec 04, 2013 Innocent man: How inmate Michael Morton lost 25 years of his life

QUOTE: a group of attorneys, working pro bono on Morton's behalf, managed to bring the truth to light. Not only was Morton innocent, but the prosecutor, Ken Anderson, was accused of withholding crucial evidence...."an extremely rare instance, and perhaps the first time, that a prosecutor has been criminally punished for failing to turn over exculpatory evidence," the Innocence Project said.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Jul 13, 2013 Law and Justice and George Zimmerman: The exoneration of Travyon Martin's killer is a stark reminder of the limitations of our judicial systems and the choices we make about the laws under which we li

QUOTE: what the acquittal of George Zimmerman means -- to the nation, to its rule of law, to its politics, to its racial divide, to its deadly obsession with guns, to Florida's ALEC-infused justice system, and to probably 100 other things....To me, on its most basic level, the startling Zimmerman verdict -- and the case and trial that preceded it -- is above all a blunt reminder of the limitations of our justice system. Criminal trials are not searches for the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. They never have been. Our rules of evidence and the Bill of Rights preclude it. Our trials are instead tests of only that limited evidence a judge declares fit to be shared with jurors, who in turn are then admonished daily, hourly even, not to look beyond the corners of what they've seen or heard in court.

Atlantic Online, The (Atlantic Monthly)
May 06, 2013 Charts: Why You're in Deep Trouble If You Can't Afford a Lawyer:Fifty years after the groundbreaking "Gideon" ruling, public defenders are overworked, underpaid—and America's poor are paying the price

QUOTE: the Supreme Court disappointed reformers when it refused to rule on a case involving a Louisiana man serving a life sentence after waiting five years in jail while the state came up with money to pay his court-appointed lawyer....Since the 1963 Supreme Court decision, America's prison population has grown more than tenfold—from 217,000 inmates to 2.3 million—largely due to decades of the war on drugs and tough-on-crime policies. It's been nearly impossible for the public defense system to keep pace.

Mother Jones
Apr 17, 2012 DOJ review of flawed FBI forensics processes lacked transparency

QUOTE: Attorney General Janet Reno and FBI Director Louis J. Freeh decided to launch a task force to dig through thousands of cases involving discredited agents, to ensure that “no defendant’s right to a fair trial was jeopardized,”...The task force took nine years to complete its work and never publicly released its findings. Not the results of its case reviews of suspect lab work. Not the names of the defendants who were convicted as a result. And not the nature or scope of the forensic problems it found. Those decisions more than a decade ago remain relevant today for hundreds of people still in the U.S. court system, because officials never notified many defendants of the forensic flaws in their cases and never expanded their review to catch similar mistakes.

Washington Post
Feb 28, 2012 Judge’s dismissal of atheist's harassment claim against Muslim makes waves

QUOTE: A blog post by the group American Atheists disagrees. "That a Muslim immigrant can assault a United States citizen,” it says, “in defense of his religious beliefs and walk away a free man, while the victim is chastised and insulted... is a horrible abrogation."

CNN (Cable News Network)
Jun 20, 2011 Court Issues Split Ruling on Poor’s Right to Counsel

QUOTE: In a 5-to-4 decision that divided along ideological lines, the court said there is no automatic right to counsel for people charged with civil contempt, at least when the parent seeking to collect child support does not have a lawyer.

New York Times
Apr 27, 2011 Great Leap Backward

QUOTE: First, the government is arresting not only dissidents and Christians but also their family members and even their lawyers. Second, after a long period in which police would torture working-class prisoners but usually not intellectuals, the authorities are again brutalizing white-collar dissidents.

New York Times
Aug 21, 2009 Detainees Said to Be Shown Photos of C.I.A. Agents

QUOTE: he Justice Department is investigating whether three military defense lawyers for detainees at the Guantánamo prison illegally showed their clients photographs of C.I.A. interrogators...

New York Times
Dec 09, 2008 Solicitation or Shrewd Tactics? Ethics of Speaking for Ex-Workers

QUOTE: ethical controversy concerning a practice that is not uncommon -- a company's litigation counsel offers to represent, at the company's expense, a former employee who is a witness in pending litigation....while the practice of representing former employees may strike some as unfair, there are substantial arguments why it does not violate the Code of Professional Responsibility's bar on solicitation.

New York Law Journal (NYLJ)
Nov 08, 2008 Citing Workload, Public Lawyers Reject New Cases

QUOTE: Public defenders’ offices in at least seven states are refusing to take on new cases or have sued to limit them, citing overwhelming workloads that they say undermine the constitutional right to counsel for the the most open revolt by public defenders in memory, many of the government-appointed lawyers say that state budget cuts and rising caseloads have pushed them to the breaking point.

New York Times
May 10, 2008 Judge Drops General From Trial of Detainee

QUOTE: Critics of the military commission system said Friday that the judge’s decision would provide new grounds to attack the system that they say was set up to win convictions.

New York Times
May 09, 2008 Debate on analyzing 'cold hit' DNA matches swirls in case before California Supreme Court

QUOTE: A long-time scientific controversy centers on how to calculate the probability that such a match would be the result of coincidence.

Los Angeles Times
May 07, 2008 As Executions Resume, So Do Questions of Fairness

QUOTE: fresh questions about whether states are supplying capital-murder defendants with adequate counsel, even as an execution on Tuesday night in Georgia ended a seven-month national suspension. In all three cases, North Carolina appeals courts found that evidence that would have favored the defendants was withheld from defense lawyers...

New York Times
May 07, 2008 Lawyers for Guantánamo Inmates Accuse U.S. of Eavesdropping

QUOTE: In interviews and a court filing Tuesday, lawyers for detainees at Guantánamo said they believed government agents had monitored their conversations. The assertions are the most specific to date by Guantánamo lawyers that officials may be violating legal principles that have generally kept government agents from eavesdropping on lawyers.

New York Times
May 06, 2008 Justice System For Detainees Is Moving At a Crawl: No Sept. 11 Trials Likely Before Bush Leaves Office, Officials Say

QUOTE: "Some of the detainees haven't even seen their lawyers yet, there's incredibly complicated issues about access to evidence and discovery, and as we've seen with every single case to date, it's incredibly hard to move through a system that lacks established rules and precedent,"...That new system, set up by Congress's Military Commissions Act of 2006, so far has been entangled by numerous motions that challenge its fairness and constitutionality. Military officers presiding over the cases have had to make critical decisions on the fly, including some appealed to another new court created by the same legislation.

Washington Post
May 06, 2008 He's a Man, as Charged: But Should Emerging Brain Science Affect Courts' Handling of Young Defendants?

QUOTE: The debate over whether kids should be tried and punished as adults has simmered for years. The discussion is intensifying, however, because of recent discoveries that the brain's prefrontal cortex, which governs reasoning, develops more slowly than the limbic system, where the emotions reside.

Washington Post
May 03, 2008 When Law Prevents Righting a Wrong (The Nation)

QUOTE: The obligation to keep a client’s secrets is so important, they say, that it survives death and may not be violated even to cure a grave injustice — for example, the imprisonment for 26 years of another man, in Illinois, who was freed just last month.

New York Times
Feb 26, 2008 Sidebar: The Right to Counsel, in the Right Situations

QUOTE: Both sorts of restrictions are unusual, and they give rise to this question, as framed by Mr. Moussaoui’s appellate lawyers: “Are federal courts willing to compromise or eliminate core constitutional protections if the indictment arises in the context of a terrorism case?”

New York Times
Feb 19, 2008 Defender in the Case of a Slain 7-Year-Old Girl Has His Admirers: Other Lawyers

QUOTE: Whatever it takes to acquit Nixzmary’s stepfather, Cesar Rodriguez, of one of the more notorious child murders in the city’s recent history, Mr. Schwartz says he is morally and professionally obligated to try it, if it is legal. In Mr. Schwartz’s ethical universe, the decision to represent Mr. Rodriguez has the air of a sacred mission.

New York Times
Feb 16, 2008 Moussaoui Deprived of Constitutional Rights, Attorneys Say: Appeal Seeks to Overturn Guilty Plea, Life Sentence Because of Evidence Kept Secret, Counsel Choice Denied

QUOTE: "[Zacarias]Moussaoui faced the choice between pleading guilty and facing a fundamentally unfair trial in a death-penalty case. This was an unconstitutional choice, and his plea was involuntary as a result,'' [his attorneys say]...

Washington Post
Feb 13, 2008 Rules for Lawyers Of Detainees Are Called Onerous: Fair, Adequate Defense Questioned

QUOTE: Months before the trials of some of the detainees are set to begin, some of the attorneys say the Defense Department's regulations for their work [defending detainees at Guantanamo Bay] are so onerous that they will be unable to provide a fair and adequate defense of their clients.

Washington Post
Jan 19, 2008 Lawyer Reveals Secret, Toppling Death Sentence

QUOTE: [A Virginia lawyer] reluctantly kept a secret because the authorities on legal ethics told him he had no choice, even though his information could save the life of a man on death row, one whose case had led to a landmark Supreme Court decision.

New York Times
Jan 01, 2008 Your PC's Been Arrested—Now What? If anyone misuses your network, guess who's liable?


PC Magazine
Nov 20, 2007 Saudi: Why we punished rape victim

QUOTE: Under law in Saudi Arabia, women are subject to numerous restrictions, including a strict dress code, a prohibition against driving and a requirement that they get a man's permission to travel or have surgery. Women are also not allowed to testify in court unless it is about a private matter that was not observed by a man, and they are not allowed to vote.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Nov 09, 2007 Doubts raised over 1999 murder conviction

QUOTE: They allege that police used deceptive investigative tactics and that prosecutors withheld key evidence that would have cast a kinder light on Masters, who is serving a life sentence.

CNN (Cable News Network)
Nov 06, 2007 ‘Bad’ Legal Advice and the Death Penalty

QUOTE: A federal appeals court eventually ruled that the lawyer’s advice reflected such bad judgment as to fall below the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of the effective assistance of counsel. On Monday, the Supreme Court announced that it would use the case to decide how appellate courts are to evaluate claims of ineffective assistance of counsel in plea negotiations.

New York Times
Oct 20, 2007 Naming Names at Gitmo

QUOTE: Diaz had printed the document from his own computer, bought the valentine at the base exchange and left his fingerprints on the list. This past May, Matthew Diaz became the only United States serviceman to be convicted and imprisoned for an act of insubordination directed at the Bush administration’s detention policies.

New York Times
Oct 01, 2007 Exoneration Using DNA Brings Change in Legal System

QUOTE: But some law enforcement officials oppose some of the changes, saying they create legal minefields for the police and prosecutors. Any deviation from the new standards, no matter how minor, could be taken up by defense lawyers in an appeal, the critics say.

New York Times
Sep 01, 2007 Legal Battle Resuming on Guantanamo Detainees

QUOTE: The legal battle over the rights of the hundreds of men held as enemy combatants at Guantánamo Bay has lasted more than five years, including two rounds in the Supreme Court. Now, as the parties prepare for their next Supreme Court confrontation later this fall, the arguments have come full circle to where they began: over the role of the federal courts.

New York Times
May 30, 2007 What do states owe the exonerated? States' compensation for wrongful imprisonment ranges from zero to millions of dollars.

QUOTE: The cases are typical results of the patchwork of compensation laws in the US, say experts. Last month, the 200th person was exonerated due to DNA evidence, but the majority of those released have gotten nothing but an apology – and sometimes not even that. As DNA exonerations become more plentiful – and more publicized – some states are moving on the compensation front.

Christian Science Monitor
Mar 09, 2007 The Brain on the Stand

QUOTE: The influence of what some call neurolaw is clearly growing. Neuroscientific evidence has persuaded jurors to sentence defendants to life imprisonment rather than to death; .... Should courts be in the business of deciding when to mitigate someone’s criminal responsibility because his brain functions improperly, whether because of age, in-born defects or trauma? As we learn more about criminals’ brains, will we have to redefine our most basic ideas of justice?

New York Times
Jan 08, 2007 Free-Market Justice

QUOTE: when we removed the control for the seriousness of the crime, public defenders performed relatively worse, not better (five years more incarceration versus three years more).

New York Times
Jan 08, 2007 Battling Deportation Often a Solitary Journey: Without Legal Assistance, Thousands Are Expelled Unfairly, Critics of System Say

QUOTE: unlike in criminal courts, the government does not provide free lawyers for the poor....That leaves respondents to navigate byzantine immigration law, the judges to walk them through it and, critics say, the courts to operate sluggishly and deport thousands unfairly.

Washington Post
Jan 02, 2007 The Way We Live Now: Not the Case

QUOTE: The often circuslike atmosphere of [Hussein's] trial, as well as the murder of three defense lawyers, led groups like Human Rights Watch to condemn the tribunal as flawed and illegitimate.... Since its inception, the tribunal has been haunted by a fundamental problem that bedevils the new Iraqi government more generally: the nature and origin of its authority.

New York Times
Oct 17, 2006 Will the Supreme Court shackle new tribunal law? Will the Supreme Court shackle new tribunal law?

QUOTE: The terror legislation set to be signed into law Tuesday by President Bush sits atop an ideological fault line that sharply divides the US Supreme Court and highlights the emerging power of Justice Anthony Kennedy. The new law rejects at least five key holdings by the liberal wing of the court and sets the stage for what many analysts believe will be yet another historic showdown between the courts, the president, and Congress.

Christian Science Monitor
Oct 10, 2006 Rules of engagement: What were they at Haditha? If marines are charged with killing as many as 24 Iraqi civilians, defense lawyers will argue the soldiers followed the rules.

QUOTE: The rules stem from the Joint Chiefs' Standing Rules of Engagement, which are based on laws of war...firing on a car that contains civilians yet fails to slow or stop for a checkpoint - something US troops have done often in Iraq - is justified if those firing have a "reasonable" belief the car is a threat, he adds. During the November 2004 battle of Fallujah, marines - including some from the unit under suspicion in Haditha - tossed hand grenades into houses or rooms where they believed insurgents to be. That's the tactic that was used in Haditha, too...

Christian Science Monitor
Sep 24, 2006 So Small a Town, So Many Patent Suits

QUOTE: On the surface, there is little to recommend Marshall as a locus for global corporations looking to duke it out over who owns the rights to important technology patents. Some 150 miles east of Dallas, and just minutes from the Louisiana border, Marshall and its 25,000 residents are fairly typical of most small cities in Texas....What’s behind the rush to file patent lawsuits here? A combination of quick trials and plaintiff-friendly juries, many lawyers say....Others point to a different reason why plaintiffs may win more often than defendants: plaintiffs, they say, typically hire local Marshall lawyers.

New York Times
Aug 18, 2006 Crackdown on Defense Lawyers Is Intensified in China

QUOTE: Chinese officials intensified a crackdown on defense lawyers today, the latest sign that Communist Party leaders are determined to stamp out legal challenges to their authority.

New York Times
Jul 21, 2006 China Postpones Trial of Family Rights Activist

QUOTE: The trial of a blind rural lawyer, charged in what rights activists say is a politically motivated case, was postponed Thursday, and a group of his supporters was assaulted by unknown assailants outside the courthouse...being punished for trying to organize a rare class-action lawsuit revealing abuses in enforcing China's one-child family planning policy.

Washington Post
Jul 12, 2006 Indicted Ex-KPMG Employees Sue Company for Legal Fees

QUOTE: Sixteen former employees of accounting firm KPMG have sued to compel the company to advance their legal fees and expenses in connection with a federal probe of an illegal tax shelter scheme...They claim that this previously uncontested practice created a "reasonable expectation" that legal fees and expenses would be advanced...
Jun 28, 2006 Policy on Legal Fees Excessive, Judge Says: He Criticizes 'Zeal' Of Justice Dept.

QUOTE: A Justice Department policy that warns companies against paying legal bills for employees under investigation violated the workers' constitutional rights...

Washington Post
Jun 12, 2006 Postmark Guantanamo: Why is the Pentagon keeping prisoners' mail from their lawyers?

QUOTE: after 18 months in Guantanamo, Paracha, 58, decided to write a letter to 98 U.S. senators describing his plight. The senators...don't know the letters exist. The Department of Defense won't release them for delivery.

In These Times
May 03, 2006 Did Rush Limbaugh Get Off Easy in OxyContin Case?

QUOTE: ...some legal experts say the settlement was a fair one for a first-time drug offender. But other experts say Limbaugh, 55, avoided prosecution as a result of an aggressive, high-priced legal fight by his attorney.
Apr 25, 2006 Can traffic lawyers win your case? You be the judge

QUOTE: ...traffic ticket lawyers often devote their entire practice to traffic tickets, sometimes handling hundreds per day. Some even offer a money-back guarantee if they fail to get your fine reduced or keep the ticket off your record.
Apr 17, 2006 Judges Press Companies That Cut Off Legal Fees

QUOTE: Federal judges are beginning to question why companies are cutting off legal fees to their executives when they become caught up in criminal investigations...This shift from a long tradition of paying such costs, one that is codified in many companies' bylaws and in some states' laws, has come since the Justice Department set guidelines in 2003 amid a sweeping crackdown on corporate fraud.

New York Times
Dec 22, 2005 Court Bars Transfer of Padilla To Face New Terrorism Charges

QUOTE: A federal appeals court yesterday refused to authorize the transfer of "enemy combatant" Jose Padilla to face new criminal charges, issuing a strongly worded opinion rebuking the Bush administration and its handling of the high-profile terrorism case. The same court that had granted the administration wide latitude in holding Padilla without charges or a court appearance now is suggesting that the detention was a mistake.

Washington Post
Nov 15, 2005 Senators Agree on Detainee Rights: Deal Would Allow Some Court Access

QUOTE: The compromise links legislation written by Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.), which would deny detainees broad access to federal courts, with a new measure authored by Sen. Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.) that would grant detainees the right to appeal the verdict of a military tribunal to a federal appeals court. The deal will come to a vote today, and the authors say they are confident it will pass. Graham and Levin indicated they would then demand that House and Senate negotiators link their measure with the effort by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) to clearly ban torture and abuse of terrorism suspects being held in U.S. facilities.

Washington Post
Nov 07, 2005 Supreme Court to Hear Cases of Convicted Honduran, Mexican Citizens: Convicted of Murder, Honduran Says Police Denied Him Access to Embassy

QUOTE: The U.S. justice system recently has begun paying closer attention to the issue, with some prodding from the International Court of Justice. After Mexico filed a complaint with the international court in 2003, contending that the U.S. had violated the Vienna Convention rights of 51 Mexican defendants on death row, the ICJ ordered the U.S. government to review all 51 cases, saying Mexican consular officials could have aided the defendants.

Washington Post
Sep 21, 2005 Detainee Hunger Strike Prompts Request for Health Records Access

QUOTE: Detainees [at Guantanamo Bay--Ed.] on hunger strike are protesting what they describe as beatings at the prison and their indefinite detentions...

Washington Post

92 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Next 42]