An Appeal to Remember

In US v. Gaines, the Fourth Circuit addressed the Government’s appeal from the District Court’s order granting Mr. Gaines’ motion to suppress.  Specifically, the District Court suppressed a firearm seized by police following an unlawful stop of a vehicle in which he was a passenger. The district court suppressed the gun on the basis that it was “fruit of the poisonous tree,” while the Government maintains that intervening events, and resisting arrest committed by Gaines, purged the illegality of the stop and rendered the firearm admissible. The Court affirmed the district court’s order granting the motion to suppress.

An Appeal to Remember

National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and The Heritage FoundationAudio Recording of Panel discussion, Legislating Chaos:  Has Congress Made Playing Hooky A Federal Crime?

On Tuesday, December 8, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in two high-profile “honest services” fraud cases, Conrad Black v. United States and Bruce Weyhrauch v. United States.  In his often-quoted dissent from denial of certiorari in Sorich v. United States, Justice Scalia wrote:  “If the ’honest services’ theory … is taken seriously and carried to its logical conclusion, presumably the statute also renders criminal a state legislator’s decision to vote for a bill because he expects it will curry favor with a small minority essential to his reelection [and] a mayor’s attempt to use the prestige of his office to obtain a restaurant table without a reservation …. Indeed, it would seemingly cover a salaried employee’s phoning in sick to go to a ball game.” 

Listen in as the panel members participate in a vigorous discussion of the cases and statute (18 U.S.C. § 1346) that the Supreme Court will be scrutinizing.