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Criminal Law

Criminal Law Newsletters

Confessions – Fifth Amendment Right to Counsel

The United States Supreme Court held in 1966 in the case of Miranda v. Arizona that a person has a right to an attorney during questioning by the police. The basis for this right is the privilege against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Criminal Forfeitures and Attorney Fees

Although a defendant has a right to an attorney and although the attorney has a right to be compensated for her services, the defendant does not necessarily have the right to transfer an asset to that attorney in lieu of payment when the asset may be subject to criminal forfeiture. Generally, the defendant may transfer an asset for compensation to her attorney if:

JURY INSTRUCTIONS ON ELEMENTS OF AN OFFENSE

The prosecution has the burden of proving all the elements of an offense with which a defendant is being charged. In accordance with this burden of proof, a trial court is required to specifically instruct a jury on all the elements of the offense. A jury instruction is defective if it fails to set forth all the elements of the offense.

Obstruction of Justice

In addition, among those people who have made plans for the future, some have made plans that are legally defective. There are so-called wills that are defective because they have not been prepared according to the required formalities. There are also wills prepared according to the required formalities that are so well hidden that they cannot be found. When people try to make a will without the assistance of a lawyer, they seem bound to make a mistake. One of the strongest arguments for having a lawyer prepare your will is this: otherwise you won’t know if you have made a mistake until you die.

Prosecutors, Immunity and Conflicts of Interests

The prosecutor has immunity from civil liability for actions undertaken during their official duties. The prosecutor enjoys both absolute and qualified immunity. The prosecutor has absolute immunity in initiating a prosecution and in presenting the State’s case, so long as the prosecutor’s actions are done in conformity with the judicial process.

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