Legal Blog


June 2016 Archives

“Violent Felony” And “Crime of Violence”: What Johnson v. United States Can Mean For Other Federal Criminal Statutes Involving Violent Crimes

In 2015, the Supreme Court decided Johnson v. United States. The decision struck down part of the federal Armed Career Criminal Act of 1984 (“ACCA”), which defined a legal term: “violent felony,” used for some federal crimes. As noted in a recent article from the Washington Post, hundreds, if not thousands, of prisoners can expect to have their prison sentences reduced as a result of Johnson.

Johnson’s impact, however, does not stop at the individuals directly sentenced under ACCA. The Supreme Court’s rationale in Johnson may be applicable to many other federal criminal statutes, including laws defining a similar term: … Read More »



Can the Government Freeze Assets I Need to Hire an Attorney ? 

In order to answer this question, it is important to recognize that under forfeiture law, there are two broad categories of assets: tainted and untainted assets.

What are tainted assets?

Tainted assets refer to assets that are in some way linked to the crime: either it can be “traced” to a crime, or was an “instrumentality” of the crime. For an example of the former, If Bernie Madoff used the profits of his pyramid scheme to purchase a life insurance policy, that policy is now tainted because it can be “traced” back to the illegal pyramid scheme. For an … Read More »