When the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its decision in Robert McDonnell v. United States nearly two years ago, it announced a new standard for cases involving a federal bribery statute. This first article of a two-part series examines how state courts have construed McDonnell and provides some practical tips for prosecutors to consider when investigating, charging, and trying corruption cases that may help avoid McDonnell issues.
Amie Ely, director of NAGTRI's Center for Ethics & Public Integrity (CEPI), writes about assembling a cadre of "ethics gurus" from attorneys general offices and summarizes some of the ethics issues that have been identified. One issue addressed is whether prosecutors can ethically advise law enforcement in undercover operations that involve the use of subterfuge.
Presidential Council Issues Report Arguing that Ballistics Testimony Should Not be Admitted as Evidence
On Sept. 19, the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) issued a report titled "Forensic Science in Criminal Courts: Ensuring Scientific Validity of Feature-Comparison Methods.". This article introduces PCAST and provides an overview of the 174-page report and its recommendations to judges across the nation.