Articles Tagged with criminal law

In the continuing saga of Cliven Bundy and his band of anti-government followers, Nevada’s chief federal judge Gloria Navarro has formally refused to allow nationally known conservative lawyer Larry Klayman join Cliven Bundy’s defense team. In a three page legal order, Navarro revealed that Mr. Klayman has some potential discipline issues with the D.C. Bar Association.  She has that his disclosure in court papers claimed that no disciplinary action has been taken and the proceedings were likely to be resolved in his favor. This was “misleading and incomplete.”

According to court documents, his troubles with the Washington bar stemmed from three separate alleged conflicts of interest in litigation involving Judicial Watch after he left the organization as its legal counsel.

Klayman, the founder of the Washington-based public interest groups Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, is known for his litigious strategy in pursuit of conservative issues. Bundy is now currently represented by Las Vegas attorney Joel Hansen, who is active in the ultraconservative Independent American Party of Nevada. He filed papers pleading for the court to allow Klayman to be part of Bundy’s defense team. Klayman is allowed to reapply to represent Bundy pending he submits documents related to those proceedings.

The Senate Committee on Public Safety recently held a hearing at the end of April on Sen. Ben Hueso (D- San Diego) and the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office’s proposed bill.  Senate Bill 603, which is currently making its rounds through the California legislative process in Sacramento, would require a court to conduct a hearing in cases in which the defendant is acting as his own attorney to determine whether someone else, most likely a standby lawyer, should be appointed to question the victims. Under SB 603, a judge would have to determine whether the victim would be traumatized further by being cross examined by the defendant. That kind of finding would be allowed only in certain kinds of cases, such as rape and sexual assault, as well as in felony charges of stalking, domestic violence, elder abuse or child abuse.

The sponsored bill was prompted by a San Diego woman named Jessica.  Jessica says she was traumatized for the second time when the man who sexually assaulted her questioned her in court. The attack happened near the Old Town bus station back in March 2013. Jessica said a man dragged her behind a cafe and assaulted her.  He chose to represent himself (pro se) during his trial.

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