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Articles by Brandon Sample

FedCURE Entitled to Fee Waiver for FOIA Request

On March 19, 2009, U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton granted a motion for summary judgment filed by FedCURE, a non-profit organization that advocates for federal prisoners and their families, in a suit filed under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) against the Bureau of Prisons (BOP).

In 2005, FedCURE ...

Violence on the Rise in BOP Facilities

Killings, assaults and other acts of violence are becoming more widespread in the federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), as the prison population increases and staff-to-prisoner ratios decline. Fifteen prisoner-on-prisoner BOP homicides occurred in 2008 compared with 12 in 2007. Serious assaults on staff increased to 82 in 2008 from 72 ...

UNICOR Robs Jobs from Private Sector; Prisoners Sue Over Working Conditions

It is already hard enough for free world workers to hold down a job without having to compete with UNICOR, the prison labor arm of the federal Bureau of Prisons. But that is exactly what a group of more than 300 Pennsylvania employees are going through. The workers, employed by ...

BOP Failed to Protect Female Prisoner Informant from Rape, Sexual Abuse by Guards

The federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) was “woefully deficient” in failing to protect a female prisoner from sexual abuse by BOP guards, U.S. District Court Judge Cecilia M. Altonaga concluded in November 2008, following a bench trial in a suit filed under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA). Ultimately ...

OIG Audit Finds Major Deficiencies with BOP Health Care

OIG Audit Finds Major Deficiencies with BOP Health Care

by Brandon Sample

A comprehensive audit by the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) found numerous problems with the provision and management of medical services by the federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP).

The OIG’s latest audit focused on ...

Cost of Defending Federal Death Penalty Cases on the Rise

The cost of defending federal death penalty cases has increased sharply since 1998, according to a preliminary report by the Judicial Conference Committee on Defender Services.

Congress first revived the federal death penalty in 1988, authorizing capital punishment for so-called “drug kingpin” murders. In 1994, Congress expanded the scope of ...

Protecting Your Health & Safety

Book review by Brandon Sample

The murky waters of prisoner self-representation just got a little easier to navigate with the arrival of the second edition of Protecting Your Health & Safety, A Litigation Guide For Inmates.

Published by the Southern Poverty Law Center and distributed by PLN, Protecting Your Health & Safety ...

PLN Awarded Summary Judgment In FOIA Case Again

On March 26, 2009, U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton entered summary judgment for PLN in an ongoing battle between Prison Legal News and the BOP over the release of certain records.

In 2003, PLN submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the BOP for “all documents showing ...

Systemic Constitutional Violations at Ohio Juvenile Facilities Leads to Settlement in Class Action; Guards Attempt to Block Relief

Systemic Constitutional Violations at Ohio Juvenile Facilities Leads to Settlement in Class Action; Guards Attempt to Block Relief

by Brandon Sample

The Ohio Department of Youth Services (ODYS) has agreed to settle a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of all juvenile offenders incarcerated in the ODYS.

Problems with the ...

Ninth Circuit Strikes Down BOP Regulation Precluding Early Release for Prisoners Who Complete Drug Treatment

Ninth Circuit Strikes Down BOP Regulation Precluding Early Release for Prisoners Who Complete Drug Treatment

by Brandon Sample

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) violated the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in promulgating a regulation that precludes up to ...