This Task Force was created to study the current weaknesses with, and to draft and propose reforms to, the Sentencing Guidelines for economic crimes. The Task Force includes three NACDL representatives, including Kyle O'Dowd, NACDL's Associate Executive Director of Policy.
The Task Force has proposed a rewrite of the federal “fraud guideline” (USSG 2B1.1). The first draft of this proposal was unveiled and discussed extensively at the Sentencing Commission’s Economic Crime Symposium in New York in September 2013. Initial reactions from most judges and practitioners (and even a couple commissioners) were very favorable. The proposal was published in The Champion, accompanied by commentary from Task Force member James Felman,and elsewhere in hopes of eliciting support, debate and constructive criticism.
The Task Force revised the proposal based on this feedback and released a second draft of its proposal in May 2014 and a final draft in November 2014. The proposal drafts, along with Felman's commentary published in the Champion, are available below. In addition, some defense attorneys and courts have begun citing and relying upon the proposal in criminal sentencing proceedings. NACDL is attempting to collect materials from such cases and make them available on this page. Sentencing memos and transcripts from two such cases are available below.
Materials from the ABA Task Force
A Report on Behalf of the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section Task Force on the Reform of Federal Sentencing for Economic Crimes (Final Draft), Nov. 10, 2014.
ABA Memo to US Sentencing Commission Re: Second Draft of Proposed Guidelines, May 15, 2014.
A Report on Behalf of the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section Task Force on the Reform of Federal Sentencing for Economic Crimes (Second Draft), May 15, 2014.
"A Report on Behalf of the American Bar Association Task Force on the Reform of Federal Sentencing For Economic Crimes," by James E. Felman, The Champion, November 2013.
Cross-Examination Trial Pack
NACDL’s new Cross-Examination Trial Pack includes three of our best-selling Cross-Examination resources: “Damage Control: Situational Cross-Examination Techniques Trial Guide”, "Ultimate Cross 2.0: Audio Recordings & Written Materials" and "Sample Cross-Examination Questions."
This masterful collection of cross-examination resources provide countless tips, techniques and strategies for a variety of criminal case-specific scenarios. Learn to cross-examine a variety of trial witnesses!
Death Investigation: Forensic Pathology in the Courtroom and Cause & Manner of Death (2022)
This unique program provides criminal defense lawyers with an accurate and clear overview of forensic pathology and the countless factors to consider in a death investigation and will methodically explain what happens during an autopsy to determine cause and manner of death.
You'll uncover the different types of medicolegal death investigations, what to request from your MDI expert, quality benchmarks for accreditation and certification, guidelines and standards, common terminology and frequently asked questions.
The Psychology of Persuasion & Storytelling for Criminal Defense Lawyers
This Trial Resource Guide is a masterful collection of practical tips, techniques and strategies focused solely on using the arts and sciences of persuasion to improve your storytelling skills at trial.
You'll learn how to master the ability to communicate with juries, deliver powerful openings and closings, perform convincing cross-examinations, use effective courtroom choreography and non-verbal communication, identify and develop the optimal theme and theory for your case, and offer compelling arguments during mitigation and sentencing.
Zealous Advocacy in Sexual Assault & Child Victims Cases (2022)
Defending charges of sexual assault and child abuse can be daunting — but with the right tools, it doesn’t have to be.
Every year, NACDL identifies the hottest topics and most pressing issues when defending these cases, and brings-in nationally-renowned lawyers and experts to help you prepare for battle. This year’s 13th Annual Defending Sex Cases training program is our best yet; packed with topics and speakers you won’t want to miss!