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Criminal Procedure

University of Richmond

2007

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Can Prosecutors Bluff? Brady V. Maryland And Plea Bargaining, John G. Douglass Apr 2007

Can Prosecutors Bluff? Brady V. Maryland And Plea Bargaining, John G. Douglass

Law Faculty Publications

The author discusses the symbolic value of the Brady rule in the pretrial context in the U.S. criminal justice system. Brady's symbolic power remains stronger than its corrective power in post-trial motions. It serves as a constitutional reminder to prosecutors because they cannot serve as architects of unfairness. Most prosecutors disclose more Brady material in pretrial discovery than the constitutional rule actually demands. This indicates that prosecutors can bluff.