Washington, DC (June 1, 1999) --
Supreme Court Vacates Drug Conviction
The U.S. Supreme Court today held that before a jury can find that the government has proven the federal crime of “Continuing Criminal Enterprise,” it must agree that a “continuing series”of drug offenses was proven beyond a reasonable doubt — and must be unanimous as to what those offenses were. Richardson v.United States, 97-8629. The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) filed a friend of the court brief on behalf of the right to jury unanimity.
NACDL President Larry Pozner issued the following statement from his office in Denver today:
“The inviolable right to a jury trial in criminal cases -- reaching back to the time when King John signed the Magna Carta in 1215 -- must not be diluted by the government simply throwing multiple charges against the wall of justice to see if any of them stick. Our cherished liberties cannot be protected from governmental overreaching unless juries are instructed that overcoming the presumption of innocence requires their unanimous agreement as to each and every element of the accusation.
“The government in this case, using one of the most deadly weapons in the ‘war on crime’ -- a charge calling for imprisonment for life without parole -- took one shortcut too many, the Supreme Court properly notes. Our fundamental liberties as Americans desperately need to be reasserted, and proclaimed throughout the land, as the Court has just done.”
A Defender’s Guide to Federal Evidence: A Trial Practice Handbook for Criminal Defense Attorneys
This Guide to Federal Evidence is the only federal evidence handbook written exclusively for criminal defense lawyers. The Guide analyzes each Federal Rule of Evidence and outlines the main evidentiary issues that confront criminal defense lawyers. It also summarizes countless defense favorable cases and provides tips on how to avoid common evidentiary pitfalls. The Guide contains multiple user-friendly flowcharts aimed at helping the criminal defense lawyer tackle evidence problems. A Defender’s Guide to Federal Evidence is an indispensable tool in preparing a case for trial.
Modern Digital Evidence & Technologies in Criminal Cases
Modern cases need modern defenses, and modern lawyers can't practice with an outdated playbook. This program is a contemporary training that identifies emerging technologies and digital evidence encountered in today's criminal cases and arms you with the tools necessary to combat expert witnesses, prosecutorial overreach, and an uneducated judge and jury. This comprehensive CLE program covers both general aspects of new technologies as well as practical courtroom application and legal challenges to the use of these new technologies.
Top Shelf DUI Defenses: The Law, The Science, The Techniques (2021)
If you are serious about being an effective DUI defense advocate, or if you’re considering adding DUI defenses to your portfolio, you need to know the latest scientific and legal strategies to optimize your success at trial. Learn from the best-of-the-best in the field in this unique CLE Program, updated for 2021.
Defending Modern Drug Cases (2021)
From challenging the arrest and seizure to picking a jury and cross-examining police officers, defense attorneys handling drug cases must be able to construct a defense that will increase the chances of the client getting a positive result for your client.
Effective motion practice, juror selection, and storytelling have never been more important. This seminar will introduce defense counsel to techniques that have been used at recent drug trials to rebut specific claims and overcome the emotion created in today’s criminal legal system.
NACDL Communications Department
The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers 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. 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 legal system.