• Grand Jury,  Search Warrants

    Search Warrants, Subpoenas, and Danish Existentialism

    The “what-to-do-when-the-FBI-shows up” spiel is, admittedly, a well-worn trope on the white-collar panel-discussion circuit, a talk accompanied by coffee in styrofoam cups (in the morning) or dry chicken-breasts on buffet steam-tables (in the evening).  Unless the audience is virginal in its dalliance with law enforcement, the shock effect of talking about search warrants is lost, and the delivery becomes boring, leading us to that nineteenth-century Danish existentialist, Soren Kierkegaard. Yet, the subject is a serious one for corporations and for individual businesspersons.  As we have noted before, law-enforcement techniques — including search warrants — that were once limited to organized crime, drug dealers or motorcycle gangs are now used with…

  • Fifth Amendment,  Legal Education,  Obstruction of Justice,  Presumption of Innocence,  Witnesses

    The Five Best Ways for Your Client’s Employees to Get Indicted

    The nice folks at the Birmingham Bar Association (and white-collar criminal defense lawyer Steve Shaw in particular) invited me to deliver a lunchtime CLE on a white-collar subject of my choice.  The topic ended up being “The Five Best Ways for Your Client’s Employees to Get Indicted.” One could come up with more ways your client’s employees could get indicted, but life is short. Here is the handout: The Five Best Ways for Your Client’s Employees to Get Indicted. Download it.  It’s not legal advice, but it has some fairly useful material about bribery, obstruction and honest-services fraud in the Eleventh Circuit, as well as quotes from Men In Black (1997).  We spent…

  • Law Practice Management,  Legal Education

    Wine, White-Collar Crime and You.

    The ABA Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute near Atlanta on September 10 and 11, 2015  is a good event at a nice place (Chateau Elan) for white-collar practitioners. They are letting me speak at the conference, but do not let that dissuade you from attending.  The faculty list is comprehensive and the topics timely. Plus, it’s at a winery. Here are some of the topics: The Effective Use of Criminal Discovery: Tactics for the Defense and the Government Litigating Prosecutorial Conduct: The Line Between Ethics and Tactics The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and Other International Bribery Crimes: When Other Nations Join the Enforcement Party Supreme Court Update and Other Notable…

  • Legal Education

    Talk, Talk, Talk: Federal Criminal Discovery

    Two different audiences — CJA criminal defense lawyers and Birmingham corporate and non-profit leaders — heard my thoughts, hopefully helpful ones, about white-collar crime and federal criminal discovery. As part of an annual continuing legal education event sponsored by the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Northern District of Alabama on December 12 , 2014, we discussed “Discovery In Complex Criminal Cases.” Kevin Butler heads up the Northern District’s FPD office and does a great job.  (We interviewed Kevin here).  Read more about the Federal Public Defender’s Office here. This week, I participated in a white-collar crime panel for the 2014-2015 class of Leadership Birmingham,  a worthwhile organization. The…