March 23, 1994 |
Criminal defense lawyers around the state are using the "three strikes" law to file long-shot challenges to the death penalty, contending that the new sentencing scheme preempts capital punishment. A motion to preclude a death sentence for an accused triple murderer already has been filed in San Francisco, and defense lawyers elsewhere in the state say they will cite the new law in making similar motions in the near future.
March 15, 1997 |
China's increasingly independent parliament approved sweeping changes Friday in the country's criminal law, eliminating notorious "counterrevolutionary" statutes used by the Communist regime to prosecute and jail thousands of political opponents. International legal scholars have cautiously welcomed the reforms, which were unveiled last year. But they also noted that the often-abused statutes have been replaced with other laws, including sedition statutes, that can be used to stifle dissent.
September 30, 1996 |
Lawyers are some of the most eager users of the Internet, commercial online networks, CD-ROMs and electronic mail. They might not strike you as a high-tech lot, but that just goes to show that professions steeped in the liberal arts tradition haven't been able to ignore the onslaught of technology. In a national study conducted this spring by Pitney Bowes Management Service in Stamford, Conn., 94% of lawyers surveyed credited technology with making their law practices more efficient.
April 4, 1987 |
Once again, Sioux Indian Robert Sundance is on a lonely road, filing his own petition to challenge the state's criminal law against public drunkenness. This time, he has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court. Twelve years ago, Sundance was a chronic Skid Row alcoholic who, from local jail cells, started submitting handwritten court petitions to protest how public inebriates are handled by the criminal justice system.
February 24, 1993 |
In a decision that could make defendants reluctant to testify, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a person who denies charges against him in court but is convicted may be subject to additional federal penalties for obstruction of justice. The 9-0 ruling overturns a federal appeals court, which had ruled that a defendant's right to deny his guilt without fear of punishment is "basic to justice." Writing for the high court, Justice Anthony M.
November 3, 1989 |
Capping an emotional debate, the Senate voted Thursday night to change federal law and allow retired Marine Lt. Col. Oliver L. North to receive his $23,000 annual pension despite a felony conviction for shredding government documents. The vote was 78 to 17. "This one is for you, Ollie!" cried a triumphant Sen. Jesse Helms (R-N. C.), the chief sponsor of the bill, just before the roll call. Earlier, however, Sen.
June 14, 2002 |
The issue raised by jurors in the Arthur Andersen case Thursday--can the firm be convicted if they disagree about who at the firm is guilty?--is unsettled, with legal experts divided on the question. U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon left the bench Thursday without answering the question, saying she needed to research the issue. "This is a gray area," said Laurie Levenson, a former federal prosecutor and a professor at Loyola Law School.
October 13, 1997 |
Atty. Gen. Janet Reno, insisting she was not prepared to exonerate President Clinton of criminal wrongdoing, said Sunday that she would not hesitate to question him directly about his conduct in raising money for the Democratic Party.
May 29, 1995 |
Steal a $400 stereo, face 16 months to three years in prison. Take a couple's test-tube embryo--in a moral breach of trust so great it has been likened to "the Titanic on the bioethics ocean"--and the penalty could be just about the same, if it is even that severe. It is clear that the three UC Irvine doctors at the vortex of the Center for Reproductive Health controversy--Ricardo H.
September 9, 1998 |
Jeremy Strohmeyer's decision to plead guilty to the murder of Sherrice Iverson may prevent an angry and outraged public from getting a full airing of the role played by his friend David Cash. Controversy has swirled around Cash's failure to come to the girl's aid or to report Strohmeyer's action to police. But changing the laws to require people to help others--the goal espoused by many of those who have denounced Cash--would be far more difficult than many seem to believe, legal experts say.