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Monthly Archives: September 2011

Mandatory Minimums – A Prosecutor’s Secret Weapon?

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — After decades of new laws to toughen sentencing for criminals, prosecutors have gained greater leverage to extract guilty pleas from defendants and reduce the number of cases that go to trial, often by using the threat of more serious charges with mandatory sentences or other harsher penalties. Graphic Some experts say the … Continue reading »

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Federal Ruling on Florida Sentencing Laws

Are Florida’s drug laws unconstitutional? On July 27, in Shelton v. Department of Corrections, federal judge Mary Scriven held Florida’s state drug law unconstitutional because it lacked a requirement that the state prove a defendant knew he or she was engaged in illegal activity to obtain a conviction. In a nutshell, the ruling says that … Continue reading »

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