Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Journal Articles

Notre Dame Law School

Federal criminal law

Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Law

Federalization's Folly, Stephen F. Smith Jan 2019

Federalization's Folly, Stephen F. Smith

Journal Articles

Overcriminalization and overpunishment are the two key features of federal criminal law today, yet the constant drumbeat to “federalize” criminal law has accomplished precious little in terms of public safety. The failed drug war proves as much: federal prosecutors have filled the nation’s prisons with low-level drug dealers and drug users serving long sentences, but drugs remain widely available at greater purity and lower prices throughout the land — and drug overdoses are at record highs. Instead of focusing on areas of federal comparative advantage, such as terrorism, international drug trafficking, and organized crime, federal prosecutors waste scarce resources “playing …


Proportionality And Federalization, Stephen F. Smith Jan 2005

Proportionality And Federalization, Stephen F. Smith

Journal Articles

The thesis of this Article is that proportionality of punishment has become a casualty of federalization and that the federal courts helped kill it. The federal courts like to portray themselves as the victims in the vicious cycle of federalization, left defenseless in the face of rapacious efforts by Congress and the Department of Justice to use the federal criminal code for their own selfish ends. The federal judiciary repeatedly complains that its judges are overburdened with criminal cases that belong in state court. This is the story the leading lights in the academy have accepted: Congress is responsible for …


Threats, Free Speech, And The Jurisprudence Of The Federal Criminal Law, G. Robert Blakey, Brian J. Murray Jan 2002

Threats, Free Speech, And The Jurisprudence Of The Federal Criminal Law, G. Robert Blakey, Brian J. Murray

Journal Articles

In these materials, we set out a road map for the task of reforming the jurisprudence of threats and an articulation of its rationale under the First Amendment. In addition, we examine the basic jurisprudence of the federal criminal law, in particular, its traditional roots in notions of individual responsibility based on personal conduct and state of mind. In Part I, we analyze the district court and the Ninth Circuit opinions in the American Coalition litigation. In Part II, we trace the traditional theory and practice of free speech under the First Amendment, rooted in the history and various rationales …


Federal Criminal Law: The Need, Not For Revised Constitutional Theory Or New Congressional Statutes, But The Exercise Of Responsible Prosecutive Discretion, G. Robert Blakey Jan 1995

Federal Criminal Law: The Need, Not For Revised Constitutional Theory Or New Congressional Statutes, But The Exercise Of Responsible Prosecutive Discretion, G. Robert Blakey

Journal Articles

My basic point is that major aspects of systems of legal justice deal with antisocial behavior. That an aspect of these systems may be categorized as “criminal,” “civil,” “state,” “federal,” or “international,” is relevant principally to a question of legal theory or governmental organization, which is fundamentally secondary to the character of the behavior itself. In short, we have to look at the behavior first–and only then ask questions of legal theory or governmental organization.

We should not be talking about “federalization.” That is a constitutional question to which we now have a fairly clear constitutional answer. Little or no …