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Fourth Amendment Center Fellow

NACDL is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. NACDL envisions a society where all individuals receive fair, rational, and humane treatment within the criminal justice system. NACDL’s mission is to serve as a leader, alongside diverse coalitions, in identifying and reforming flaws and inequities in the criminal justice system, redressing systemic racism, and ensuring that its members and others in the criminal defense bar are fully equipped to serve all accused persons at the highest level. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal justice system.  For more information about our organization, please visit www.nacdl.org.

The Fellow will be working with the Sr. Litigation Counsel and Director of NACDL’s Fourth Amendment Center. NACDL’s Fourth Amendment Center has three core objectives: (1) educate defense lawyers on emerging issues at the intersection of advancing technology, privacy, and the constitutional rights of the accused in criminal cases; (2) establish a practical and dynamic toolkit of resources to help lawyers identify opportunities to challenge government surveillance tools and techniques as they arise in criminal cases; and (3) assist in litigating cases that present an opportunity to challenge the use of new technologies and to partner with impact litigators.

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Work with Sr. Litigation Counsel to provide legal and technical assistance to defense lawyers with relevant cases, ranging from phone consultations and expert referrals, to direct assistance drafting legal motions in key cases.
  • Work with NACDL membership to identify cases that are poised to change legal doctrines and put state and federal constitutional constraints on the use of surveillance programs and technologies.
  • Provide legal research and drafting support to Sr. Litigation Counsel on key Fourth Amendment issues and cases. Monitor and incorporate new decisions on relevant issues.
  • Draft and publish articles and blog posts on relevant Fourth Amendment issues.
  • Assist the Sr. Litigation Counsel and Director in designing and implementing education programs, including webinars and CLEs.
  • Develop, identify, and make available online resources on Fourth Amendment related surveillance and suppression issues.

Experience and Qualifications

The applicant must possess the following qualifications:

  • J.D. required.
  • Demonstrated commitment to civil liberties and criminal justice reform.
  • Excellent research, writing, and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to engage in complex legal analysis and fact-finding.
  • Background in criminal defense (including law school clinics), particularized knowledge of search and seizure law, or knowledge of existing surveillance tools and technology a plus.
  • Active bar membership is also a plus.
  • Ability to work independently as well as within a team.
  • Ability to work well with NACDL’s leaders, members, staff, and allies.

To apply please send a cover letter, resume, transcript and writing sample to Jumana Musa at jmusa@nacdl.org.

This Fellowship is being funded in part by the Charles Koch Institute and the Charles Koch Foundation and hiring is contingent upon acceptance into the Koch Associate Program.

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