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Black and Whitey: How the Feds Disable Criminal Defense
Forbes ^ | 1/03/2013 | Harvey Silverglate

Posted on 01/04/2013 10:23:39 AM PST by Slings and Arrows

Two remarkable legal proceedings are currently wending their way through the federal criminal courts. The cases involve very different parties: Conrad Black, one of the most consequential public intellectuals and businessmen of our era, and James “Whitey” Bulger, a Boston-based alleged racketeer and serial murderer. But both cases highlight some of the same profound problems with the way federal prosecutorial business is done these days.

In both cases, as in countless others, the feds have used certain techniques that virtually assure convictions of both the innocent and the guilty, the wealthy and the poor, the violent drug dealer and the white collar defendant, indifferent to the niceties of “due process of law,” particularly the right to effective assistance of legal counsel. In order to prevent a defendant from retaining a defense team of his choice, federal prosecutors will first freeze his assets, even though a jury has yet to find them to have been illegally obtained. They then bring prosecutions of almost unimaginable complexity, assuring that the financially hobbled defendant’s diminished legal team (or, as is often the case, his court-appointed lawyer) will be too overwhelmed to mount an adequate defense.

(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Government
KEYWORDS:
Sure you'll get a fair Federal trial. Just ask Scooter Libby.
1 posted on 01/04/2013 10:23:44 AM PST by Slings and Arrows
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To: Slings and Arrows

Was Alinsky a lawyer?


2 posted on 01/04/2013 10:29:27 AM PST by C210N (When people fear government there is tyranny; when government fears people there is liberty)
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To: Slings and Arrows

The plea bargain is where they get you.

There is no real choice, plead guilty and stay out of jail, or fight, and face 25 years hard time as punishment for not going along.


3 posted on 01/04/2013 10:42:18 AM PST by ansel12
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To: Slings and Arrows

The concept of justice has been cast aside in the insane rush to establish unquestioned federal government supremacy over all aspects of our lives.


4 posted on 01/04/2013 10:52:19 AM PST by Iron Munro (I Miss America !!!!)
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To: Slings and Arrows
Yet another casualty of the idiotic "War on Drugs."

Libertarians warned that so-called "asset forfeiture" laws deprived defendants of life, liberty and property without due process, and also warned they would not be limited to drug dealers once they'd been demonstrated as effective prosecutorial tools.

They nevertheless had support from both sides of the aisle.

Rule of thumb: Any law that has "broad based bipartisan support" is a BAD IDEA.

5 posted on 01/04/2013 11:07:22 AM PST by FredZarguna (Funded by Arab oil money, so you know it's objective and altruistic.)
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To: Slings and Arrows
Shame this thread only has 4 replies so far
6 posted on 01/04/2013 11:08:28 AM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: MileHi

I’ll say something on the thread, but have little idea what I could do about this (except something that would get me on charges...) to help that I’m not already doing.


7 posted on 01/04/2013 11:14:14 AM PST by El Laton Caliente (NRA Life Member & www.Gunsnet.net Moderator)
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To: ansel12

“The plea bargain is where they get you.”

And thanks to a SCOTUS decision this year (Rehberg v. Paulk, 9-0) both prosecutors and police officers are immune from civil suit even if they knowingly lie on the witness stand.

And then there’s this:

“We do not see how the existence of a false police report, sitting in a drawer in a police station, by itself deprives a person of a right secured by the Constitution and laws.” (Pottawattamie vs. McGhee)

[that’s because it hasn’t been used at a trial yet; but it can
be used to force a plea bargain]

And this:

“A prosecutor ... may receive absolute immunity from suit for acts violating the Constitution in order to advance important societal values.” -Elena Kagan, Solicitor General, 2009

You thought you had constitutional rights and protections?
LOL! (sarc/off)


8 posted on 01/04/2013 11:17:48 AM PST by CondorFlight (I)
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To: Slings and Arrows

Conrad Black was hated by academic feminists more than any other group. He began advocating for conservative fathers’/family rights long ago, when living in Canada. He once owned the National Post in Alberta. He later moved to the UK and published from there. Feminists and homosexual activists of the divorce/cohabitation lobbies (including bar associations) dogged him in three countries.


9 posted on 01/04/2013 11:22:46 AM PST by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of rotten politics smelled around the planet.)
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To: El Laton Caliente
...but have little idea what I could do about this.... to help that I’m not already doing.

I hear you. Anyone could be ruined by the fed judicial system. Even a fairly wealthy man cannot hope to counter the limitless resources of the fed agencies. Increasingly the targets are selected and destroyed for political reasons.

10 posted on 01/04/2013 11:24:05 AM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: MileHi

These kind of cases scream out for jury nullification.


11 posted on 01/04/2013 11:39:52 AM PST by dirtboy
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To: dirtboy
These kind of cases scream out for jury nullification.

Yes. Except like the case in Montana of a Med MJ grower busted by the fed, he was not allowed to tell the jury that what he was doing was legal under stste law. Or many gun cases where the defendent is not allowed to bring up the second amendment as a defense. If you are not allowed to mount a defense, it is hard for the jury to side with you.

In some cases jury instructions practically direct the jury to convict.

12 posted on 01/04/2013 11:50:40 AM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: MileHi
And the voir dire process ensures that very few people on juries are independently capable of knowing the law. As the old saw goes, in a jury trial your fate is to be decided by twelve people who couldn't figure out how to get out of jury duty.
13 posted on 01/04/2013 11:54:46 AM PST by dirtboy
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To: dirtboy

Exactly so.

Happy New Year Dirt!


14 posted on 01/04/2013 11:57:25 AM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: MileHi

You too! Hope all is well out there.


15 posted on 01/04/2013 12:05:35 PM PST by dirtboy
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To: Slings and Arrows

The federalization of crime is truly one of the most despicable trends of the last 50 years. I hope all involved get their due when they meet their Maker.


16 posted on 01/04/2013 12:09:27 PM PST by microgood
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To: ansel12
There is no real choice,

Sure there is....

Challenge juristiction.

17 posted on 01/04/2013 12:32:11 PM PST by MamaTexan (To follow Original Constitutional Intent, one MUST acknowledge the Right of secession)
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To: Slings and Arrows; Jacquerie

The Constitution and Bill of Rights just get in the way of a perfectly regulated society.


18 posted on 01/04/2013 12:41:17 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: ansel12

This, plea bargaining and Administrative Law should all be thrown out as unConstitutional. American law isn’t about practicality, but justice.


19 posted on 01/04/2013 12:53:43 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: MileHi

Louie Gohmert is my Rep and I just helped vote Ted Cruz in... That is where the change has to come from. After that there is only one thing left...


20 posted on 01/04/2013 12:54:33 PM PST by El Laton Caliente (NRA Life Member & www.Gunsnet.net Moderator)
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To: El Laton Caliente
After that there is only one thing left...

Hard to be optimistic anymore.

21 posted on 01/04/2013 1:07:14 PM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: 1010RD
Thanks for the ping, I WAS having a decent afternoon. /s

And where is the outcry over the poor schlep doing hard time for a vid because the Hildebeast had to divert attention away from her responsibility for the Benghazi murders?

The noble experiment of our Framers is not ending well.

22 posted on 01/04/2013 1:07:21 PM PST by Jacquerie ("How few were left who had seen the republic!" - Tacitus, The Annals)
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To: Jacquerie

We have a country taught by government employees to obey government from a young age. Government education is the #1 mistake America made.


23 posted on 01/04/2013 1:43:04 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: MileHi

God help anyone who falls under the Federal microscope especially after reading the article.

And I am sure some people in the gov’t would like to get rid of the 5th amendment.

> Anyone could be ruined by the fed judicial system.


24 posted on 01/04/2013 1:59:30 PM PST by CORedneck
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To: CORedneck
God help anyone who falls under the Federal microscope...

Really. And a good number of conservative authoritarians here champion this stuff as long as it is aimed at "them". They really believe they are so superior somehow that it could never happen to themselves.

25 posted on 01/04/2013 2:11:05 PM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: MileHi

The only real non-violent solution to this is if enough conservatives are elected so we can get the leftist judges impeached.


26 posted on 01/04/2013 2:36:07 PM PST by El Laton Caliente (NRA Life Member & www.Gunsnet.net Moderator)
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To: 1010RD
We have a country taught by government employees to obey government from a young age.

You reflect a sad truth. Our corrupted government for a corrupted people is one of force and not one of persuasion as envisioned by the Framing generation.

A government based on the will of the people, limited by a Bill of Rights and of enumerated powers could be nothing but a mild and guiding hand hardly known or felt by the vast majority. Generations of our students were taught the Bill of Rights in school, and the innate goodness of republican government.

My gosh, what happened? How did a largely virtuous people turn on themselves?

27 posted on 01/04/2013 2:39:30 PM PST by Jacquerie ("How few were left who had seen the republic!" - Tacitus, The Annals)
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To: familyop

Exactly why we have a separation of powers and a bias toward protecting the accused - political prosecutions.


28 posted on 01/04/2013 3:03:22 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: CondorFlight

Maybe it’s time for a moratorium on Ivy-League grads sitting on our highest courts. Perhaps somebody from Texas A&M law school would see these things differently.

I suspect the fundamental problem is the people themselves. They’re wholly ignorant of anything except those things that stimulate or retard their pleasure centers.


29 posted on 01/04/2013 3:05:37 PM PST by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
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To: 1010RD

How about a moratorium of any ivy league graduate having anything to do with Gov’t whether it is the courts or elected office. Any graduate from an East Coast ivy league school need not apply !

> Maybe it’s time for a moratorium on Ivy-League grads sitting on our highest courts.


30 posted on 01/04/2013 4:15:52 PM PST by CORedneck
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To: MileHi

That concept is moving to the state level. See George Zimmerman for a great example. Or the Duke Lacrosse kids.


31 posted on 01/04/2013 9:16:38 PM PST by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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