Showing posts from June, 2020

New NACDL & FAMM Documentary on Plea Bargaining and the Trial Penalty

If you haven't watched the new documentary on plea bargaining and the trial penalty from FAMM and the NACDL, I highly recommend the film to you. The documentary, entitled "The Vanishing Trial," captures the difficult choices faced by defendants when confronting the trial penalty and focusses on four stories that leave the viewer with a vivid sense of the manner in which plea bargaining is jeopardizing our Constitutional right to a trial.  More information about the documentary and how to view the film is available here .  From the website: Imagine you’re charged with a crime. Now you must choose between pleading guilty and receiving a shorter sentence–or going to trial and risking decades behind bars.   “The Vanishing Trial” focuses on four individuals who were forced to make that excruciating choice.  Each was threatened with a “trial penalty,” the term used to describe the substantially longer prison sentence a person receives if they exercise their constitutio

Professor Dervan's Research Discussed in Flynn Brief

Many in the public and the legal profession are closely following the many twists and turns of the Michael Flynn prosecution. Flynn, President Trump's former National Security Advisor, pleaded guilty in 2017 to making false statements during an interview with the FBI. In early May, 2020, however, the Department of Justice filed a motion to dismiss the prosecution, setting off a complex back and forth between the Department of Justice, Flynn's defense team, and the judge in the case, Judge Emmet Sullivan. The government's motion eventually led Judge Sullivan to seek advice regarding how to proceed from former federal judge John Gleeson. Judge Gleeson recently released a lengthy report reconstructing the prosecution and recommending that Judge Sullivan proceed with sentencing Flynn, despite the government's attempts to drop the case. In addition to deciding whether to accept the government's motion to dismiss the case or proceed with sentencing based on Flynn's 2