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If I had Tom Foley's tax accountant, there is one thing I most assuredly would not do: I would not run for public office pretending I had any idea about what is and is not sound public policy. Foley lives as a free-rider, avoiding taxes while living like a plutocrat. Why would anyone vote for...
There are secret courts operating in our midst, and I am not referring to those tribunals whose focus is national security. I'm talking about something more basic and closer to home. I'm talking about our juvenile courts, where the fate of children is sometimes determined.
Consider the case...
The law of evidence governs what is and is not admissible in a trial. A judge's decision on what a jury hears could quite literally be the difference between freedom and imprisonment, and, in some cases, between life and death. Just ask Larry Johnson.
Earlier this year, Brittany Paz, Jim...
I wasn't on the New Haven jury that convicted Angelo Reyes of arson and conspiracy charges. But I know a thing or two about Mr. Reyes, having represented him in federal court on other arson charges before federal prosecutors engineered a conflict to get me thrown off the case: They threatened to...
Juries are fickle, especially in civil cases, where we give them the right and the power to award money in the form of compensatory damages, and, in rare cases, to assess punitive damages. Money becomes a proxy for justice. Yet standing in well of a civil court asking for money always reminds me of...
"Everybody talks," the prosecutor said. He was confident, strutting his stuff in the well of the court. "In the end, everyone talks," he said again.
I felt as though I were watching a bad version of Inspector Javert, from Victor Hugo's "Les Miserables," a minister of justice undone, in the...
A future historian might one day write the following of our time:
"Despite a generally permissive culture in which sexually suggestive photographs were used to advertise products ranging from toothpaste to cars, 21st century Americans nonetheless harbored draconian and puritanical laws...
There's a cold logic in refusing to pay ransom to terrorists: Holding a firm line may well serve as a deterrent to further acts of terror. Destroy the pecuniary incentive for terrorists to kidnap folks, and, the theory goes, there will be fewer kidnappings. I wonder about that logic when it comes...
Editor's Note: John Rowland was convicted today after scarcely any deliberations at all.
Why don't jurors get a pause button, or some other instrument, so that they can stop the government mid-sentence when a prosecutor says something so craven, so stupid, so misguided and even disingenuous...
Folks are sometimes surprised to see a black anarchist's flag hanging in the corner of my law office. "Aren't you a lawyer?," they ask. "Don't you believe in the rule of law?" Shouldn't I be wearing a small American flag in the lapel of my suit, as is the fashion of some lawyers? The answers are...