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The Duquesne University School of Law will be sponsoring a national symposium entitled, “Plea Bargaining After Lafler & Frye” in collaboration with the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section White Collar Crime Committee, Mid-Atlantic Region. The Honorable W. Louis Sands of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, a former state and federal prosecutor, will deliver the keynote address on Thursday, February 28 offering his reflections from the bench.
The seminar reflects on the U.S. Supreme Court’s two latest decisions regarding plea bargaining, Lafler v. Cooper and Missouri v. Frye. These decisions recognized that a defendant has a right to the effective assistance of counsel in the process of criminal negotiations. The Court, however, expressly declined to say what remedy a defendant, whose lawyer did not perform effectively during the plea bargain, should receive. These cases raise many more questions than they answer. Do they change the plea process? How does one go about evaluating whether a lawyer has been a constitutionally competent negotiator? What remedy should lower courts apply? Do these cases portend judicial limitations on prosecutors?
A series of panels will follow on Friday, March 1, each hosted by a prominent Pittsburgh lawyer or judge who will focus on implications and concerns raised by these two decisions. The day will begin with an introduction by the Honorable Frank Easterbrook of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and author of one of the seminal pieces on the subject.
Other panelists included Nancy J. King, Vanderbilt Law School; Susan R. Klein, The University of Texas School of Law; Stephanos Bibas, University of Pennsylvania Law School; Jenny M. Roberts, American University Washington College of Law; Ronald Wright, Wake Forest University School of Law; David S. Abrams, University of Pennsylvania Law School; Albert Alschuler, University of Chicago Law School emeritus; Bruce Green, Fordham University School of Law; Russell D. Covey, Georgia State University College of Law; David Perez, Perkins, Coie, Seattle; Wesley M. Oliver, Duquesne University School of Law; Richard L. Lippke, Indiana University; and, Gabriel “Jack” Chin, UC Davis School of Law.
In addition to Pietragallo’s James W. Kraus, moderators of the various panels will consist of Lisa B. Freeland, Federal Public Defender, Western District of Pennsylvania; The Honorable Thomas M. Hardiman, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit; Elliot C. Howsie, Public Defender, Allegheny County; and, Mark A. Rush, K&L Gates.
This symposium has been approved by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board for six (6) hours of substantive CLE credit. Admission fee for District attorneys & staff, public defenders & staff, judges & judicial staff with CLE credit is $60. General practitioners seeking CLE credit is $90.
For more information on the symposium, please contact Duquesne University’s Professor Wes Oliver. To register for the program, please visit http://www.duq.edu/academics/schools/law/alumni-and-friends/continuing-legal-education/registration.