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September 26, 2006

SCOTUS soft on crime as it fills its docket

As detailed here at SCOTUSblog, the Supreme Court today granted cert on nine new cases.  I documented in this prior post that the Court has a heavy criminal law docket to start its new term, but the new grants are light on criminal justice issues.  Here is Lyle Denniston's report on the two grants that should most interest criminal law folks:

Among the cases granted was one filed by the federal government, testing whether an alien living in the U.S. can be deported after being found guilty of a crime that could include a verdict of aiding and abetting (Gonzales v. Duenas-Alvarez, 05-1629).

In a death penalty case with significant potential for affecting the relationship between criminal defendants and their defense lawyers, the Court will hear an Arizona appeal testing whether defense counsel has a duty to develop and offer evidence favorable to the client, when the client actively opposes any such maneuver. (Schriro v. Landrigan, 05-1575).

UPDATE: Crime & Consequences has this post with a fascinating observation about the SCOTUS habeas docket this term: "There are now five Ninth Circuit habeas cases on the argument docket: Belmontes, Musladin, Bockting, Burton, and Landrigan.  All except Burton are cases where the state petitioned on the ground that the Ninth exceeded the limits on federal habeas review."  I find it sad and telling that the only defendant to lose in the Ninth Circuit from this group (Burton) was the one arguing to extend Blakely rights.

September 26, 2006 at 11:59 AM | Permalink


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