22 December 2004

Hating Virginia

Here's someone who really doesn't like the criminal justice system in Virginia.


Mister DA said...

Huh. I though Walker was being tried in Federal Court by the DoJ. As far as I know, state law plays no part in Federal criminal trials. I suspect the VA district was picked because of its proximity to DC and the DoJ headquarters, not from any desire to take advantage of the, apparently, prosecutor friendly laws of the Old Dominion.

I defer to our host as to the validity of Mr. Sloan's other comments about the criminal justice system in VA. I find most of his claims hard to believe (criminal defendants can't instruct their attorneys to ask questions?) but don't know enough to comment.

Take a look at his home page - Mr. Sloan is an interesting character, to say the least.

By the way, John Walker, in case you've forgotten, pled guilty and avoided trial all together.

Gus said...

Even in the Federal system, though, VA is a ``good" place for a conviction-thirsty prosecutor to bring charges. The 4th circuit is not known as one of the more *ahem* liberal *ahem* circuits. (It's hard to use the words liberal. And 4th circuit in the same sentence.)

We also saw a similar move in the VA sniper case, where charges were first brought in VA (as opposed to DC or MD, where more of the shootings occurred). If memory serves, the gov't initially meant to bring federal charges, but decided to let VA have the case. The principal basis for this decision is the ``range of penalties," i.e., the availability of the death penalty. I'm certain, however, that the chance-of-conviction calculus played some role, too.


Brian said...

I can only see a friendly 4th Circuit as the reason for his being moved to Virginia. (Is there any doubt that Reinhardt and the other liberal cranks on the 9th Cirrcuit would love to do anything to overturn Walker's conviction?) Unless I am mistaken, the rules in the federal sysytem are uniform.

That article is a misinformed waste of time.