Tuesday, November 8th, 2005

An Excellent Supreme Court Summary from the Criminal Defense Perspective

Our colleagues in the Federal Public Defenders Office in Portland, Oregon, have once again prepared an excellent summary of the past Supreme Court term from the criminal defense perspective. To tantalize readers, here is Steve Sady’s summary introduction:

“Three major themes emerged from the opinions. First, the protection of core constitutional rights has solidified in a surprising number of cases. Second, the Doctrine of Constitutional Avoidance continues to provide a key analytical framework for federal litigation. Lastly, the Court’s devotion of so much time to the rules of statutory construction emphasizes the need for federal defense attorneys to incorporate them into our litigation vocabulary. The overall message is to hit constitutional issues hard, but layer them with statutory arguments that avoid the necessity of resolving the constitutional questions.”

Click HERE for the full document in pdf format.

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