Archive for July 2017

Sheriff Joe Arpaio found guilty of Criminal Contempt

Federal District Judge Susan Bolton found Joe Arpaio, who served as sheriff of Maricopa County (Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Glendale, Chandler), Arizona for nearly a quarter century.  Arpaio had been a Drug Enforcement Agent before being elected the sheriff, and had marketed himself as the “toughest sheriff” in America. Arpaio operated as a thug in sheriff’s…

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Civil Asset Forfeiture

What is Civil Asset Forfeiture?

The Government uses Civil Asset Forfeiture to confiscate property in cases involving suspected wrong-doing through the civil, not criminal, process.  The civil asset forfeiture process can be used before a criminal prosecution to strip the defendant of assets that the Government believes are the fruits of criminal activity. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced this month…

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Can Donald Trump Pardon Himself?

Can the President Pardon Himself?

The short answer is, maybe. Article II, Clause 1: [H]e shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offenses against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment. The only explicit limitation on the pardon power is that the president may not pardon himself or others from impeachment. In any case, impeachment is not…

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In Defense of the Accused

Twenty-four years ago I was in my junior year at the University of Pennsylvania where I was an associate editor of the award-winning Daily Pennsylvanian, the entirely student-run (with an independent corporation) newspaper at the University of Pennsylvania. The experience was fantastic.  In my time, I knew Harold Ford, Matt Selman, the infamous Stephen Glass,…

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What is Parole? Calculating a Sentence

OJ Simpson will appear before the Nevada Parole Board, after nine years in a state prison for robbery-related crimes.  A high-profile parole hearing often brings a slew of questions about parole in criminal cases in North Carolina and the federal system. The Definition of Parole Parole in American criminal justice is the review by a…

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Revenge Porn: The Rob Kardashian Story

Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past 10 years, you’ve heard of the infamous Kardashian family. From marriages to children, to leaked sex tapes, this family has been all over social media. Most recently, the youngest of the clan Rob Kardashian has been accused of violating California’s Revenge Porn Law.   The…

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Sheldon silver

A New Federal Trial for Shelly Silver

Once upon a time Sheldon Silver, 73, was the most powerful man in New York, more powerful in some ways than the Governor.  A Democratic assemblyman from Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Shelly, as he was known to friends and enemies alike, was elected Speaker of the New York State Assembly in 1994. New York’s state…

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Internet Technology and Pornography

Operation Broken Heart: Child Porn Crackdown

In the wake of Attorney General Session’s Atlanta speech decrying child pornography and reiterating the Trump administration’s emphasis on enforcing pornography distribution laws, the FBI announced Operation Broken Heart IV in late May and early June, a nationwide effort that led to a more than 1,000 arrests. Louisiana saw more than 100 arrests. The Los…

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Cell Phone Tower Schematic

Cell Phone Tower Data and Search Warrants

Cell Phone Towers & Investigations Can the Government get your historical cell tower data without a warrant? Cell phone data is used by law enforcement in order to try to pinpoint the location of a person during the commission of a crime. Even in idle mode, cell phones constantly ping towers, often pinging different nearby…

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Peer-to-Peer Sharing and Child Pornography Crimes

Matthew White admits he was surfing the Internet looking for a “Girls Gone Wild” video – a perfectly legal act – when he happened upon a file using the peer-to-peer network  The file was child pornography.  White did not intend to download it, and immediately deleted the file.  He went on with his life.…

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