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Make your Business Litigation Proof (Well, Almost)

Many of my litigation clients are owners of small to mid-size businesses that find themselves thrust into court for the first time. These folks are often shocked to see how time consuming and expensive the litigation process can be. So after years of counseling them through the court system, I have observed that there a […]

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Prosecutorial Immunity Saved by the Bell – or the Dollar in this Case

One of the most frustrating aspects of working on wrongful convictions is the realization that prosecutors enjoy a wide immunity for actions that they take that led to the wrongful conviction. Many in the field were closely watching, therefore, the case of Pottawattamie County v. McGhee which had recently been argued before the US Supreme […]

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The Death of the Death Penalty?

Fifty years ago or so, the American Law Institute (ALI) was given the profound task of devising a method of making the death penalty constitutional in a country where the Eighth Amendment of its constitution prohibits “Cruel and Unusual Punishment.” The ALI (made up of about 4,000 judges lawyers and law professors) has now announced […]

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Freedom Won for Innocent Man but Maybe at the Cost of Truth

Emel McDowell was 16 years old in 1990 when he was arrested for the murder of Jonathan Powell. From the moment of his arrest, he has maintained his innocence. Yesterday, in Brooklyn Supreme Court, before Judge John Ingram, I secured his release during a hearing where we were trying to establish his innocence. The Kings […]

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New Forms of Surrogacy May Cause Legal Nightmares

In the more than 20 years since Mary Beth Whitehead sued for the return of Baby M, the child she carried as a surrogate for William and Elizabeth Stern, the science of reproduction has expanded dramatically and with it new and difficult legal challenges perhaps unforeseen by the parties involved and their lawyers are emerging. […]

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Fla: Judges Should not “Friend” Lawyers on Facebook

The Florida Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee this week issued an opinion that judges should not “friend” lawyers who appear before them on Facebook. The Committee stated that doing so “reasonably conveys to others the impression that these lawyer ‘friends’ are in a special position to influence the judge.” All states have rules that require judges […]

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Italian “Jury” Convicts American Student of Murder in a Tale of Sex and Drugs – All that was Missing Was Evidence!

Amanda Knox, a 20 year old Dean’s List Student from the University of Washington studying abroad for a year in Perugia Italy, has been convicted of murder and related charges in connection with the death of her roommate Meredith Kercher, a British exchange student from Leeds University. The evidence against her? That during a 30 […]

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Giving up Gotti – Why Feds Need to Let Junior Go

As soon as the inevitable fourth hung jury rendered its verdict, reporters asked the US Attorney’s Office if there would be a fifth re-trial of Junior Gotti. The government responded with its usual stock response “No determination has been made yet.” Well it should be crystal clear that the fifth trial should never take place […]

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“I was an Undercover Blogger for the FBI”

One of the most unusual cases of the year is on trial in Federal Court in Brooklyn where Hal Turner, a New Jersey blogger, is accused of using his blogs to incite assault and murder against three Chicago Federal judges. The case was transferred to Brooklyn from Chicago to avoid any conflicts of interest. Turner’s […]