Criminal Justice

Prosecutors Run Amok? - Event Audio/Video

2015 National Lawyers Convention
Alex Kozinski, John G. Malcolm, George J. Terwilliger, Darpana Sheth, Keith Blackwell, John J. Park, Jr. November 19, 2015

The Supreme Court has instructed in clear terms that the duty of the Federal prosecutor in a criminal prosecution "is not that it shall win a case, but that justice shall be done." Berger v. United States, 295 U.S. 78, 88 (1935). Yet the news pages are filled with examples of Federal prosecutorial overreach. In its term just ended, the Supreme Court reversed six of seven criminal convictions that reached it, several all involving some form of over criminalization that can lead to prosecutorial overreach. And large categories of prosecutorial overreach never reach the Supreme Court, from dozens of convictions of "insider trading" by non-insiders (now found not to be a crime by the Second Circuit); to civil forfeitures of property of legitimate small businesses never charged with a crime; to multi-billion dollar settlements of the thinnest of charges with large banks, pharmaceutical companies, and individuals that cannot take any risk of a criminal conviction; to what one jurist has described as an “epidemic of Brady violations abroad in the land." 

The panel will explore whether prosecutorial overreach has become epidemic. It will also explore potential remedies ranging from reducing the number of crimes, to sentencing reform, plea bargain reform, civil forfeiture reform, and more. Finally, it will ask who should take action to control prosecutorial overreach? Should it be the state bars? Should the courts be more aggressive? Or, is the task primarily one for Congress? If so, what are the most promising avenues of reform?

Professional Responsibility: Prosecutors Run Amok?
11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Chinese Room

  • Hon. Alex Kozinski, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • Mr. John G. Malcolm, Director, Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, and Ed Gilbertson and Sherry Lindberg Gilbertson Senior Legal Fellow, The Heritage Foundation
  • Hon. George J. Terwilliger III, Partner, McGuireWoods LLP
  • Ms. Darpana M. Sheth, Constitutional Litigator, Institute for Justice
  • Moderator: Hon. Keith R. Blackwell, Associate Justice, Supreme Court of Georgia
  • Introduction: Mr. John J. Park, Jr., Of Counsel, Strickland Brockington Lewis LLP

The Mayflower Hotel
Washington, DC

Ferguson, Baltimore, and Criminal Justice Reform - Event Audio/Video

2015 National Lawyers Convention
Arthur Loevy, Tim Lynch, David B. Muhlhausen, Michael P. Tremoglie, Robert L. Woodson, David Stras, Gail Heriot November 18, 2015

Criminal justice and policing reform are much in the news lately, sparked by events that garner national media coverage. This panel will assess the need for reform, and the road forward. How do media narratives about policing square with the empirical evidence? What are the most effective methods of policing, and how can they best be promoted? What is the proper way to balance police activity and the crime rate? In the current atmosphere, is legitimate police activity chilled? Must law enforcement officers responding to calls pause to consider their potential personal liability?

Civil Rights: Ferguson, Baltimore, and Criminal Justice Reform
12:00 noon – 2:15 p.m.
East Room

  • Mr. Arthur Loevy, Partner, Loevy & Loevy
  • Mr. Tim Lynch, Director, Project on Criminal Justice, The Cato Institute
  • Dr. David B. Muhlhausen, Research Fellow in Empirical Policy Analysis,  Center for Data Analysis, The Heritage Foundation
  • Mr. Michael P. Tremoglie, Former Philadelphia Police Officer
  • Mr. Robert L. Woodson, Sr., Founder and President, Center for Neighborhood Enterprise
  • Moderator: Hon. David Stras, Associate Justice, Supreme Court of Minnesota
  • Introduction: Hon. Gail Heriot, Professor of Law, University of San Diego School of Law

The Mayflower Hotel
Washington, DC

Address by Neil Eggleston - Event Audio/Video

2015 National Lawyers Convention
Neil Eggleston, Dean A. Reuter November 16, 2015

Assistant to the President and White House Counsel Neil Eggleston delivered this address at the 2015 National Lawyers Convention on Thursday, November 12, 2015. He was introduced by Mr. Dean A. Reuter, Vice President & Director of Practice Groups at The Federalist Society.

11:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Grand Ballroom

  • Mr. Neil Eggleston, Assistant to the President and White House Counsel
  • Introduction: Mr. Dean A. Reuter, Vice President & Director of Practice Groups at The Federalist Society

The Mayflower Hotel
Washington, DC

Vanita Gupta, Department of Justice’s Top Civil Rights Prosecutor, on Criminal Justice Reform and Policing - Podcast

Civil Rights Practice Group Podcast
Vanita Gupta November 02, 2015

Vanita Gupta, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, delivered an address on criminal justice reform and policing. In announcing her arrival at the Department of Justice, Eric Holder praised Ms. Gupta, saying that “even as she has done trailblazing work as a civil rights lawyer, Vanita is also known as a unifier and consensus builder. She has a knack for bridging differences and building coalitions to drive progress.” This praise has been echoed by sources as diverse as National Rifle Association head David Keene, who told the Washington Post that Ms. Gupta “listens to and works with people from all perspectives to accomplish real good.”


  • Vanita Gupta, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Civil Rights Division, United States Department of Justice