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Federal Criminal Discovery

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ISBN: 9781614382287
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In nearly every criminal case, information is at a premium for both sides. Discovery plays a major role in federal criminal cases as it includes recordings, documents, electronic data, or tangible objects as well as unwritten information such as witness statements that have not been recorded or memorialized in writing.

The rare value of information in a criminal case lies partly in its inaccessibility, as the parties' right to discovery is relatively narrow. Because discovery rights in charged criminal cases are limited, the parties often must litigate vigorously and creatively to obtain significant information.

Federal Criminal Discovery thoroughly covers each of the different methods of discovery available to the parties in federal criminal cases. It serves as an invaluable resource for judges, academics, prosecutors, and defense lawyers by providing an exhaustive discussion on the statutory and constitutional bases for discovery, and by covering the existing law fairly while examining both sides of the issues.

Specific topics include:
•   Defendant's constitutional right to obtain exculpatory evidence under Brady v. Maryland
•   Extensive coverage on Rule 16 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure
•   The discoverability of witness statements
•   Subpoenas
•   Additional federal rules and statutes which contain discovery rights and obligations
•   The court's power to order discovery in criminal cases
•   Ethical rules and Justice Department policies that impact the federal prosecutor's disclosure obligations
•   Restriction of criminal discovery in appropriate cases
•   Policy reform

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

CHAPTER 1

Brady Information

CHAPTER 2

Rule 16 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure

CHAPTER 3

Witness Statements

CHAPTER 4

Subpoenas for Documents

CHAPTER 5

Other Federal Rules and Statutes Permitting or Requiring Discovery

CHAPTER 6

Inherent Authority of the Court

CHAPTER 7

Discovery Obligations Under Ethical Rules

CHAPTER 8

Department of Justice Criminal Discovery Policies

CHAPTER 9

Special Considerations: Witness Safety and National Security

CHAPTER 10

Enforcement and Sanctions

CHAPTER 11

Local Practice in U.S. District Courts

CHAPTER 12

Reform Proposals

APPENDIX A

Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure Addressing Discovery

APPENDIX B

18 U.S.C. ยง 3500 The Jencks Act

APPENDIX C

Websites for Local Rules or District-Wide Standing

Orders Governing Criminal Discovery

Table of Cases

Index

Acknowledgments

About the Authors