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Florida’s Proposal to Create a Prison-Within-A-Prison During Pandemic Arguably Violates Prisoners’ Eighth Amendment Rights

By The Baez Law Firm |

In early May, a proposal to create a separate category of prison within Florida’s central prison system–an area referred to as an “administration management unit” (AMU)–was put forth, whereby “troublemakers” within the prison would reportedly be segregated from the rest of the general prison population. Critics have indicated that it represents the administration’s attempt… Read More »

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The First Amendment On Trial

By The Baez Law Firm |

The US supreme court has been petitioned to review an incredibly important First Amendment free-speech case, McKesson v. Doe. The case involves a police officer who was allegedly assaulted at a black lives matter protest, and who is now seeking damages against the individual who organized the protest even though he had nothing to… Read More »

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Florida Senate Moves to Block Initiative to Decriminalize Recreational Marijuana Before Florida Supreme Court

By The Baez Law Firm |

The Florida Senate is using a controversial new law to block a constitutional ballot initiative that would legalize and decriminalize recreational marijuana, raising a number of civil rights concerns in doing so. Specifically, the Senate is arguing that the state Supreme Court should block the recreational marijuana amendment because it would not only conflict… Read More »

Courtroom

Florida Former Felons Voting Rights Lawsuit Granted Class Action Certification, Paving The Way to All Former Felons Having Voting Rights Restored

By The Baez Law Firm |

Florida ex-felons’ long battle to have their civil right to vote restored, as the voters already dictated, took another huge step in April when the federal judge overseeing the case granted class certification to the lawsuit, opening the door for the success that applied to the original 17 plaintiffs to now apply to every… Read More »

U.S. Supreme Court Rules That Officer Can Pull You Over Simply for Vehicle Ownership Being Associated with Suspended or Revoked Driver’s License Under Some Circumstances

By The Baez Law Firm |

In April, The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on a very important Fourth Amendment search and seizure case, finding that police officers may stop a vehicle simply because the vehicle is registered to someone whose driver’s license is suspended or revoked, thereby relying on the assumption that the owner is the individual driving the car… Read More »

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Florida Contemplates Charging Those Who Knowingly Expose Others to Virus with Culpable Negligence

By The Baez Law Firm |

As the coronavirus pandemic brings more and more panic into our everyday lives, governors and other state officials have entered into emergency declarations and taken other measures to try and protect the general public health, such as ordering particular individuals to self-isolate if they experience coronavirus symptoms. Indeed, authorities have been cracking down on… Read More »

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11th Circuit Court of Appeals Rules That Non-Prosecution Agreement Entered into by Epstein Cannot Be Overturned

By The Baez Law Firm |

In April, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals held that Jeffrey Epstein’s victims did not have the right to challenge the non-prosecution agreement entered into between the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida and Epstein under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act (CVRA) because there was never an actual indictment and/or federal… Read More »

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Supreme Court to Hear Important Police Brutality Case Where Innocent Defendant Was Beaten Unconscious

By The Baez Law Firm |

On March 30, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear what may very well turn out to be one of the most notorious police misconduct cases that the high court has ever reviewed in Brownback v. King. Six years ago, local police and the FBI, in partnership, mistook defendant James King for a wanted… Read More »

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Florida Supreme Court Once Again Reverses Itself & Decides That Juveniles Can Be Sentenced for More Than 20 Years

By The Baez Law Firm |

The Florida Supreme Court has once again made an astonishing decision reversing its previous decision on what constitutes cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. After shocking the state and, indeed, the entire country when, in January, it found that the court erred in 2016 when it ruled that… Read More »

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House Makes Lynching a Federal Hate Crime, But Some Are Skeptical as to Whether This Represents Justice

By The Baez Law Firm |

In March, the House officially designated lynching to be a federal crime law, punishable by life in prison, a fine, or both penalties. The law was named for Emmett Till (the “Emmett Till Antilynching Act”), who was tortured and lynched in Mississippi 65 years ago. Congress has considered similar legislation dozens of times over… Read More »

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How The Coronavirus Will Affect the Criminal Justice System & Defendants’ Rights

By The Baez Law Firm |

There is no question that the coronavirus has completely changed criminal charges and our criminal justice system, for that matter, from Florida state attorneys calling for the release of inmates to avoid the virus spreading, to Florida prisons now being closed to new inmates due to threats posed by the virus, to criminal charges… Read More »

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Florida House Passes THC Limit for Medical Marijuana, While Veterans & Senate Express Concerns

By The Baez Law Firm |

In spite of the fact that Florida voters broadly legalized medical marijuana via a constitutional amendment in 2016, in March, the Florida House signed off on a plan that would cap the amount of THC in medical marijuana for anyone under the age of 21 via a voice vote, putting in place a 10… Read More »

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Judge Orders Company to Pay $465 In Civil Litigation Dispute

By The Baez Law Firm |

More and more pharmaceutical companies that produce opioids are not only being successfully sued by plaintiffs in connection with product liability claims, but now public nuisance claims as well. In fact, a judge recently ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $465 million for deceptive marketing in connection with the opioid epidemic, finding that the… Read More »

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DNA Taken by Deception On Trial in Murder Cases

By The Baez Law Firm |

We have previously discussed the use of forensic genealogy to solve cold cases and how this new investigative technique is on the rise with law-enforcement. However, It is now of concern that, in several cases now before the courts, these techniques are being used in conjunction with DNA that was taken deceptively, which is… Read More »

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US Supreme Court to Decide If It Is Illegal to Provide Immigration Advocacy

By The Baez Law Firm |

A criminal case that also involves First Amendment free speech rights argued before the US Supreme Court in late February is an important case that could have severe repercussions for a number of citizens. If the Court rules in favor of the government, it could criminalize a significant amount of speech, ensnaring not only… Read More »

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Federal Government & Florida Increase Prosecutions of Fraud & Price Gouging

By The Baez Law Firm |

There have been a number of effects of the coronavirus on criminal defense issues, one of them being that both states and the federal government have announced an increased crackdown on fraud crimes and prosecutions. Attorney General Barr directed federal prosecutors in every state, including Florida, to prioritize prosecuting all criminal conduct related to… Read More »

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Federal Appeals Court Rules in Favor of Trans Students’ Civil Rights, While Florida Still Waits for 11th Circuit Ruling On Issue

By The Baez Law Firm |

In February, another federal appeals court (the Ninth Circuit) ruled that allowing transgender students to use certain restrooms and locker rooms does not violate the rights of other students, citing another victory for civil rights. Those who brought the lawsuit challenged one school’s protection of trans students’ rights to use the bathroom or locker… Read More »

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Law Enforcement Reported Purchasing Cell Phone Location Data Without a Warrant for Immigration Enforcement Purposes

By The Baez Law Firm |

In February, The Wall Street Journal and The Hill reported that federal law enforcement divisions have been purchasing cell phone location data in their border enforcement and immigration efforts, and not just recently, at least since 2017. According to the Journal, this information is then turned over to the Department of Homeland Security, which… Read More »

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The Government Is Using Foreign Intelligence Spying Powers to More Easily Wiretap U.S. Citizens in Regular Criminal Investigations

By The Baez Law Firm |

A fraud prosecution case that is currently underway highlights a disturbing trend that involves the government abusing its flexible surveillance powers – which were provided in order to capture foreign spies in the U.S. – to wiretap regular citizens as part of regular criminal prosecutions – often for fraud – that have nothing to… Read More »

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11th Circuit Weighs Whether To Keep Injunction In Place Allowing Ex-Felons To Vote In Spite Of Owing Financial Debt

By The Baez Law Firm |

The fight for voting rights to be restored to ex-felons pursuant to what the voters of Florida passed via Amendment 4 returned to the courts as the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was recently asked to set aside the temporary injunction placed on legislation passed by Republicans mandating that they pay any fines… Read More »

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New Study Finds That Psychological Tests Used in Criminal Trials May Be “Junk Science”

By The Baez Law Firm |

A new study revealed that unreliable IQ and psychological tests are leading to junk forensic science being used as evidence in criminal trials, and this is ultimately influencing juries and judges to make life-and-death decisions for criminal defendants. Specifically, one-third of psychological tests used in recent court cases were never reviewed in prominent manuals… Read More »

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11th Circuit Finds Florida’s Law Limiting Felons’ Ability to Vote Based On Status of Fines Unconstitutional

By The Baez Law Firm |

In late February, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals held that Florida’s law limiting voting rights for those who have previous convictions simply because they had unpaid fines and fees was unconstitutional because conditioning the right to vote based on someone’s wealth violates the US Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. As… Read More »

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Anti-LGBT Florida School Voucher Scholarship Programs Draws Fire

By The Baez Law Firm |

A recent investigation conducted by the Orlando Sentinel found serious civil rights concerns associated with Florida’s scholarship programs. Also referred to as “school vouchers,” the investigation found that almost $130 million in funding was sent to religious institutions that discriminated against homosexual students; meaning that at least 14 percent of Florida’s 147,000 scholarship students… Read More »

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Florida Approves $2 Million in Compensation for Man Wrongfully Convicted of Crime in 1976

By The Baez Law Firm |

In February, the Florida Attorney General’s Office approved a $2 million settlement claim for a man who was wrongfully convicted over 40 years ago. This decision was announced three weeks after the Department of Legal Affairs denied his request for compensation on the grounds that new evidence indicating that someone else could have been… Read More »

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Florida Lawmakers Propose Taking a New Look at Drug Crime Sentencing & Compensating More Individuals Who Are Wrongfully Convicted

By The Baez Law Firm |

In January, Florida made headway on important criminal justice legislation that would reduce the number of individuals convicted of low-level drug crimes and expand the ability for those wrongfully convicted to apply to receive compensation from the state. Below, we discuss how these measures would affect criminal defense cases and the rights of those… Read More »

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