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Criminal Law Newsletters

Confessions – Fifth Amendment Right to Counsel

The United States Supreme Court held in 1966 in the case of Miranda v. Arizona that a person has a right to an attorney during questioning by the police. The basis for this right is the privilege against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Embezzlement of Government Property

Embezzlement is defined as an improper fraudulent appropriation of property by a defendant to whom such property was entrusted. The defendant is entrusted with property if a fiduciary relationship exists between the defendant and the United States or a relationship exists in which the defendant has access and control over the government’s property.

Federal Habeas Corpus Relief

A state prisoner who has been incarcerated for a criminal offense by a state court may challenge his or her conviction by filing a petition for habeas corpus relief in a federal court. The federal court has jurisdiction over the prisoner’s custody in a state correctional institution if the incarceration constitutes a violation of the United States Constitution or the laws of the United States. The prisoner’s federal habeas corpus petition seeks to secure the release of the prisoner from an unlawful custody. However, in order to be able to file the federal habeas corpus petition, the prisoner must be in custody, the custody must be unlawful, and the prisoner must have exhausted his or her state remedies.

Loan Sharking or Usury

Loan sharking is defined as when a borrower is charged interest above an established legal rate. Depending on the state, lenders typically cannot charge more than 60% interest per year. Loan sharking is also commonly referred to as usury.

Statements of Juveniles

After a juvenile has been arrested, they have the right to receive Miranda rights and the right to be represented by counsel. The juvenile also has the right to be free from self-incrimination as provided under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.


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