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Articles by Derek Gilna

Department of Justice Expands Definition of Rape to "Ensure Justice"

Department of Justice Expands Definition of Rape to "Ensure Justice"

by Derek Gilna

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has broadened the definition of rape, first established in 1927, to include "penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral ...

Federal Court Limits New York’s Civil Commitment Statute, but Injunction Vacated on Appeal

A decision by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York severely restricted portions of New York’s Sex Offender Management and Treatment Act (SOMTA). A lawsuit filed by Mental Hygiene Legal Service (MHLS) had sought an injunction against enforcement of various provisions of the Act ...

7th Circuit Affirms Finding of No Deliberate Indifference in 1983 Case

Shane Holloway was arrested without a warrant in 2009 and confined to the Delaware County Jail, where he was denied his pre-detention medication, and was prescribed non-narcotic pain medication by prison medical staff instead. Holloway was released from jail after nine days, and was admitted to a hospital, where he ...

Wyoming State Prisoner's Suit for Access to Courts Denied by 10th Circuit

Wyoming prisoner Gary Lee Belden, sentenced in Wyoming state court to life imprisonment, has been denied relief by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit for alleged violations of his constitutional right to access the courts while he was incarcerated outside the state of Wyoming. The Appellate ...

9th Circuit Denies Double-Jeopardy Based Dismissal of Arizona Drug Case

In a case featuring especially egregious prosecutorial misconduct by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jerry Albert in prosecution of Defendant-Appellant Aurora Lopez-Avila, the 9th Circuit has refused defense efforts to dismiss the indictment on double-jeopardy grounds. The defense had consented to a mistrial in the original proceeding where Albert was found ...

1st Circuit Affirms Federal Tort Claims Judgment Against FBI in Bulger Cases

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit has affirmed the judgments entered against the Federal Bureau of Investigation, (FBI), under the Federal Tort Claims Act, (FTCA). In the most recent chapter of the various civil claims against the FBI stemming from murders committed by Boston mobster and ...

Court Upholds Guilty Plea Although Defendant Wasn't Advised of Adam Walsh Impact

Mark Allen Youngs pleaded guilty to child pornography offenses, and as part of the sentencing process was advised by the district court of his various rights under Rule 11, but was not advised of possible ramifications of his guilty plea under 18 U.S.C. Section 4248(a)(2006), also ...

Third Circuit Denies Claim against Government for Attorney’s Fees under EAJA

Dr. John Handron, a psychologist, failed in his attempt to win reimbursement for tens of thousands of attorneys' fees from the government he had incurred in defending the government's claim that he had overbilled Medicare more than $600,000. An ALJ proceeding found the figure to actually be $5 ...

U.S. Immigration Policy: Dysfunctional, Profitable and Resistant to Reform

The nation's economy remains fragile, U.S. troops continue to fight a losing war in Afghanistan, North Korea has recently threatened a nuclear attack, and in March 2013 Congress and President Obama failed to reach a compromise to prevent the “sequester,” which mandates deep spending cuts on the federal ...

10th Circuit Orders District Court to Reconsider Restrictive Sentencing Conditions

Eugene Sunday argued that computer and mental health conditions of the supervised release portion of his sentence constituted an occupational restriction unsupported by the Guidelines Manual of the U.S. Sentencing Commission, (USSG), Section 5F1.5. The district court had imposed the following special conditions of supervised release: "(1) The ...