The new fees in the university admission scandal a “trial penalty”? – FindLaw


Lori Loughlin leaves my client's John Joseph Court after appearing in federal court to answer charges arising from the university admission scandal on April 3, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Paul Marotta / Getty Images)

The college admission scandal, where parents paid bribes to inflate entrance exam scores and get athletics scholarships for their children, has given most Americans the opportunity to outrun some wealthy people who have been caught trying to manipulate the system even more in their favor.

Then we had a chance to go crazy again at Felicity Hoffman He was sentenced to two weeks in prison For her role in the case. Two weeks? This is just a slap on the wrist! The rich make it easy for them in this country!

The Ministry of Justice is coming hard

Well, the US Department of Justice just gave us another chance to take out the gangs. last week , The Ministry of Justice announced new fees Against 18 people involved in the scandal who have yet to make an admission deal. Among the defendants are actress Lori Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Musimo Giannoli, who have maintained their innocence.

Wait, more fees to preserve your innocence? is being that Exhibition?

After four other parents pleaded guilty in federal court in Boston last week, the Department of Justice announced new charges against the remaining 18 people, including 11 parents accused of conspiracy to commit bribery and seven others accused of plotting to commit fraud charges.

in a Permit, The Ministry of Justice is highlighting the dire consequences of the conviction for these new charges. All 18 people could face years in federal prison and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines.

The real goal counts

As USA Today noted in its coverage, the new indictment does not claim any new crimes uncovered by parents, coaches, and gang leaders.

Instead, the Department of Justice is simply trying to convince these people to play ball on their terms. This is a strategy suggested by the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys Trial penalty“.

In a 2018 report, the association found that more than 97% of federal criminal cases end in a plea deal. “There is ample evidence that federal criminal defendants are coerced into admitting guilt because the punishment for exercising their constitutional rights is simply too great to risk,” the report says.

“So you’re not going to accept the plea deal? Do you really want to go to court? Well, we’ll deal with those charges as well,” says the Federal Reserve, telling these parents and anyone facing federal criminal charges.

The need for high-quality representation

What would you do in this situation? Will you plead guilty and spend a few weeks in jail like Felicity Hoffman, or fight like Lori Loughlin, knowing that if you lose, you could go away for years?

Federal prosecutors rely on this fear to crowd out rational thinking when bringing charges. This reinforces the need for adequate criminal defense representation if you or someone you know is facing federal criminal charges. A lawyer who understands the strategies federal prosecutors use and how to reduce the harm they can cause can make a big difference.

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