Washington, DC (September 21, 1995) -- The head of the nation's criminal defense bar will criticize Congress' criminal justice agenda in a speech to the annual meeting of the District of Columbia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (DCACDL), to be held at Sfuzzi, in Washington's Union Station, on Friday evening, September 22.
Robert Fogelnest, president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), will discuss the hypocrisy of congressional leaders in focusing national attention on the law enforcement abuses at Waco and Ruby Ridge while simultaneously advancing legislation to confer still broader powers on the very agencies responsible for those tragedies.
Fogelnest, who practices in New York City, will detail the dangers inherent in Congress' precipitous movement to:
- curtail the Fourth Amendment exclusionary rule;
- grant over-broad powers to the President and law enforcement agencies under the guise of combating terrorism;
- choke off access of state death-row inmates to federal court review of their sentences;
- "zero out" funding for the federal Post-Conviction Defender Organizations;
- reject the recommendation of the U.S. Sentencing Commission to equalize sentences for crack and powder cocaine offenses;
- exempt federal prosecutors from the state and court ethics rules that govern all lawyers and empower them to indict their courtroom adversaries for zealous legal advocacy.
NACDL President Fogelnest will be available to answer journalists' questions after his remarks, which are expected to begin at 7:00 p.m.
The DCACDL will elect its officers for the coming year at the meeting, which begins at 6:00 p.m.
Joanne Slaight, DCACDL President
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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 justice system.