In a stunning and exceptionally rare 63 page "advisory" opinion issued yesterday, United States District Court Judge Ancer L. Haggerty excoriated both the United States Attorney for the District of Oregon and its prosecution team, in particular the Oregon State Police and OSP Detective David Steele, for their grossly incompetent and even criminal mishandling of the death penalty murder prosecutions of Holly Grigsby and David Pedersen.
Recent reveleations in the Joey Pedersen/Holly Grigsby federal murder trial have revealed just how far the U.S. government will go in order to secure a conviction. In a blatant and outrageous trampling of Constitutional rights as guaranteed to all of us by the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Fourteenth Amendments, the United States Attorney for the District of Oregon authorized the interception and review of confidential communications between Mr. Pedersen and his defense team. You can read about it here.
The Supreme Court recently reversed the Ninth Circuit in an important case involving the proper application of the Armed Career Criminal Act. The Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA) provides for a 15 year mandatory minimum sentence for federal criminal defendants who have 3 prior convictions for a "violent felony" or "serious drug offense." It can further aggravate a sentence beyond the 15 year minimum under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines by artificially increasing both the client's base offense level and elevating their criminal history category.
Crimes that involve fraud and theft are serious offenses. In fact, federal fraud charges are taken very seriously by federal courts, which punish suspected criminals upon conviction. For residents in Portland, Oregon, who may be charged with a federal crime, it is advisable to consult with a knowledgeable legal professional. If a person is accused of a federal crime and subsequently convicted, the person's life will most likely be impacted forever.
Oregon readers may know that with the internet, it is very easy to reach people in various ways. Portland residents may communicate with people in Eugene through emails and text messages. However, any messages sent by email may bring allegations and lead to federal criminal charges.
Along with cocaine and other drugs, marijuana is an illegal drug prohibited by federal and most state laws. Some states, like Oregon, allow patients with chronic or terminal health conditions to use marijuana as a pain reliever or treatment. However, marijuana use is still illegal for those who are not certified patients. Other individuals involved in the possession, distribution or delivery of marijuana may face serious drug charges.
The case of Mohamed Mohamud, the former OSU student arrested in 2010 and hit with a federal weapons charge after allegedly attempting to ignite a fake bomb, is soon to proceed to trial. We wrote about Mohamud's case earlier this year. As we noted, the FBI accuses the 20-year-old of communicating with an undercover FBI agent, which eventually led to an attempt to commit an act of terrorism during a holiday tree lighting ceremony. The case is serious, as Mohamud faces the possibility of life in prison.
On August 6, 2012, here, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals confirmed a District-wide trend and held that the unconstitutional placement of a GPS tracking device on an individual's car does not result in suppression of the evidence produced by the device.
LSD prosecutions, although rare, do occur in the District of Oregon. Those under threat of federal prosecution for a federal drug offense involving LSD need to be aware of the complex issues involved in the relationship between the Federal Sentencing Guidelines and statutory mandatory minimums in LSD offense cases. Retaining an experienced federal criminal defense attorney early on is a critically important step.
Today in United States v. Carpenter, a case out of the Portland division of the District of Oregon, the 9th Circuit joined the 2nd and 8th Circuits in holding that the production of child pornography necessarily involves the "sexual abuse" of children as that term is defined under federal criminal law.