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Posts tagged "criminal law"

Smugglers Arrested for Shipping Ammunition and Guns Hidden in Empty Vehicle Batteries

When it comes to smuggling illegal items into, or out of, the United States, smugglers can get pretty creative. Such is the case with a shipment from Maracaibo, Venezuela, which was seized by custom agents at Miami International Airport this past April.

Can Facebook Live Video be used as Evidence in Criminal Court?

The scope of social media is reaching further and further as more ways to communicate are introduced. One of the most popular features of late is live video. From Facebook Live to Periscope, live broadcasting is becoming the new normal. And because every user has access to it, anyone can now broadcast his or her own live event in a matter of seconds.

U.S. Supreme Court Revises States' Laws Reducing Prison Sentences for Minors

On Friday, August 19, Palm Beach County Court Judge, Jeffery Colbath amended the previous punishment of Ramon Rosario. Rosario was sentenced to over 200 years of prison time after being convicted of leading a band of young individuals into people's homes, kidnapping, and robbing them. He was also the participant in a standoff with a Boca Raton officer. The adjusted sentencing is in line with the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision where states should avoid giving life sentences to juvenile offenders who had not committed murder.

Accused of a crime? Don't make these mistakes on Facebook

When facing criminal accusations, it is wise to protect yourself and seek a good criminal defense attorney. However, when awaiting trial and sentencing it is important to tread carefully and with caution as to your actions. Some individuals have made grave mistakes in giving themselves away to authorities by use of social media.

Changes to Electronic Communications Privacy Act Could Let FBI into Your Email

How far can law enforcement dig into your search history? Changes to existing laws may soon permit a deeper dive than is currently allowed.

22 Accused of Committing $13.1 Million in Food Stamp Fraud

According the Miami Herald, a recent raid on a poplar flea market has resulted in 22 people being charged in food stamp fraud. If found guilty for taking what amounts to $13.1 million in government issued food assistance, the arrests would be the largest food stamp fraud case in the country to date.

Florida's Death Penalty Conviction Practices Under Scrutiny

Recent state court decisions and amendments to the laws surrounding the constitutionality of death penalty sentencing practices in Florida are being challenged by judges in multiple cases. In the most recent development, a Miami-Dade judge found the death penalty to be unconstitutional based on the fact that it does not require unanimity of the jury. Florida Circuit Judge Milton Hirsch put it this way: "A decedent cannot be more or less dead. An expectant mother cannot be more or less pregnant. And a jury cannot be more or less unanimous. Every verdict in every criminal case in Florida requires the concurrence, not of some, not of most, but of all jurors - every single one of them."

Supreme Court Questions Constitutionality of Breathalyzer Tests

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court considered the fourth amendment implications of the administration of breathalyzer tests for suspected drunk drivers. While it is true that in all 50 states there are laws which allow a person's driver's license to be revoked if they refuse a breathalyzer, some states, along with the federal government, have additional laws. These laws include criminal punishment and even jail terms for a person who refuses to take a breathalyzer test.

Assets Can't Be Frozen If Not Tied to a Crime, Supreme Court Says

Late last month, the Supreme Court battled it out over the legality of the government freezing money unconnected to a crime. Justice Stephen G. Breyer said the case was a simple one, that the government can confiscate "a robber's loot, a drug seller's cocaine, a burglar's tools, or other property associated with the planning, implementing, or concealing of a crime." However, there is one thing it cannot do and it is this: freeze money or other assets unconnected to the crime.

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