Criminal Justice Section  


Criminal Justice Magazine
Spring 2001
Volume 16, Issue 1

Section News

By Tom C. Smith

Midyear Meeting Activity

The Criminal Justice Section conducted a number of important sessions at the ABA's Feb. 16-19 Midyear Meeting in San Diego, California. The Section sponsored a continuing legal education (CLE) program entitled "Privacy and Policing in the 21st Century: ABA Standards on Technologically Assisted Physical Surveillance." This is the first in what the Section leadership hopes becomes a series of annual programs highlighting aspects of the ABA Standards for Criminal Justice. The Section was also a cosponsor of a program entitled "Genetics and the Law." Its primary sponsor was the Torts and Insurance Practice Section. Council member Paul Rashkind of Florida represented the Criminal Justice Section on the panel and spoke about DNA evidence.

The Section's Executive Committee met on February 17. It considered a number of issues, including amendments to the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct. Proposed by the ABA Ethics 2000 Commission, the amendments might affect criminal law practice. The committee also reviewed a proposed Section policy resolution urging that Congress increase the compensation for lawyers appointed to represent indigent defendants under the Criminal Justice Act. It is to be submitted in April 2001 for approval by the ABA Board of Governors as association policy.

The Section's Committee on the ABA Standards for Criminal Justice met Feb. 17-18 and considered a draft of the newly revised standards related to pretrial release.

The ABA House of Delegates debated three policy resolutions sponsored by the Section. Report No. 103A contained the newly revised electronic surveillance portion of the ABA Standards for Criminal Justice. Report No. 103B expressed opposition to "zero tolerance" policies in schools. Report No. 103C recommended that the president of the United States be required to provide notice to Congress when a U.S. national has committed an act within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court. All these policy resolutions were approved.

Join Us in Albuquerque

The Criminal Justice Section Council and a number of Section committees will meet in Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 27-29. The headquarters hotel will be the Sheraton Old Town Hotel. The Section group rate is $140 single/double occupancy (plus tax). Phone (800) 237-2133 to make reservations. A continuing legal education program will be held on Friday, April 27. It will focus on death penalty moratoriums in several states and also look at developments related to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Daubert. Social activities are also in the works.


Section Chair Ralph Martin appointed Henry Moniz of the law office of Bingham, Dana & Gould in Boston to serve as the Criminal Justice Section's liaison to the ABA Commission on Racial and Ethnic Bias.

At the request of the Section, the ABA Board of Governors designated Jane Wexton, a member of the Section's White Collar Crime Committee and an attorney with General Electric Capital Corporation's Structured Finance Group, Inc., to be one of the association's representatives on the board of regents for the National College of District Attorneys. She will serve a three-year term. She replaces Stephanie Tubbs Jones, congresswoman from Cleveland, who served two three-year terms as a regent and consequently was not eligible for reappointment.

Member-at-Large Petitions Due

Criminal Justice Section members will elect a Section Council member-at-large for a one-year term to begin August 2001. Candidates are nominated through the petitioning process. Petitions for nomination must be signed by at least 20 Section members in good standing from one or more states. If no petitions are submitted for the council member-at-large seat by the deadline, nominations will be accepted from the floor at the annual Section membership meeting on August 5, 2001.

Petitions for the member-at-large seat must be submitted by certified or registered mail to Ralph Martin, ABA Criminal Justice Section, 740 15th Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20005. Petitions must be received by June 6, 2001. Provided they are signed by the nominee on whose behalf they are submitted, nominating petitions may be received in parts. All petitions must contain an address and must be accompanied by written consent of the nominee. For a sample petition, contact Section Director Tom C. Smith at (202) 662-1510 or e-mail:

Publications of Interest

The Criminal Justice Section has published a new book on immigration law entitled, The Criminal Lawyer's Guide to Immigration Law: Questions and Answers. The cost is $79.95 for Section members and $94.95 for nonmembers. To purchase copies, phone the ABA Service Center at (800) 285-2221. Ask for product code 5090081.

The new fourth edition of the Section publication Practice Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines has been released. The cost is $365 for this 2,720-page, two-volume work. It is ordered through Aspen Law and Business. A brochure has been mailed to all Section members. If you need another brochure or more information, please contact Sherrill Fortinberry in the staff office (202) 662-1512.

CLE and Other Activities

The Criminal Justice Section has recently held two National Institute CLE programs. In mid-February, the Gaming Enforcement 2001 program was held in Las Vegas. This is a specialized program that caters to those representing the interest of the gaming industry. The very popular Annual White Collar Crime 2001 program was held in San Francisco March 8-9, marking its fifteenth session. Interested individuals, who were unable to attend these programs but want to purchase the course materials, should call the ABA Service Center at (800) 285-2221 for more information.

Staff Changes

Sarah Rosenthal has been hired to replace Will Rhee as the Juvenile Justice attorney in the Section's Juvenile Justice Center. She assumed these duties on January 1. Sadie had previously been the project assistant in the Juvenile Justice Center.

Gena Kochan, an attorney from Ohio, has been hired to assume the post of Section staff counsel vacated in January by Thomas Lester, who left to pursue private practice.

Nicholas Alexander, staff counsel, left the Section in February to engage in trial practice with a firm in Baltimore, Maryland.


Laurie Robinson, former U.S. assistant attorney general for the Office of Justice Programs and former director of the ABA Criminal Justice Section, is a senior fellow at the University of Pennsylvania's Jerry Lee Center of Criminology and its Fels Center of Government based in Washington, D.C. She will work on encouraging effective links between discussions of crime policy in the nation's capital and the experience of frontline criminal justice practitioners who are pioneering innovative, research-based approaches to public safety around the country.

Charles Ruff, former Criminal Justice Section Council member, died unexpectedly of heart failure on November 19, 2000. He held a number of high profile positions in the federal government. Most recently, he was chief legal adviser to President Clinton and represented him in the impeachment proceedings in Congress. He was also one of the Watergate special prosecutors, a U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, the District of Columbia corporation counsel, and had been a member of the Covington and Burling law firm in Washington, D.C.

Tom C. Smith is director of the Criminal Justice Section.

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