New York Civil Rights And Criminal Defense Lawyers

New York Civil Rights And Criminal Law Blog

What are the penalties for mail fraud?

In New York, white collar crimes often result in hefty penalties that can have a severe impact on your future and quality of life. This is especially true when these crimes involve United States institutions. Mail fraud is one white collar crime that involves a U.S. service. In accordance, the potential penalties you face are of utmost severity. Defining mail fraud The Congressional Research Service defines mail fraud and its related penalties. First, mail fraud by its definition is the act of furthering fraud via the postal system. This applies to public and private carriers. It can involve...

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The problem with mental illness and incarceration

While criminal behavior lacks justification in many people's eyes, mental illness plays a critical role in many crimes in New York. Perpetrators who suffer from ongoing mental trauma and subsequent illness often lack access to needed resources to provide support and healing. Once incarcerated, the issues for mentally ill inmates may only worsen and create a larger problem. Regardless of their prison sentence, inmates have the right to receive help in managing their illness. Dangers of mental illness People suffering from mental illness while incarcerated pose a significant threat to...

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Reviewing the right to act in self-defense

It may be easy for many people in New York to greet claims of self-defense as a justification for supposed criminal action with skepticism. Yet such skepticism overlooks the fact that there may indeed be scenarios where onen feels as though they have no choice to respond to the threat posed by another with force. The question then becomes to what extent does the law tolerate such a reaction. Can a person justifiably act against another any time that they feel threatened, or is that right limited? To know that answer, one must understand a unique legal principle known as "the Castle Doctine."...

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Wire fraud and its possible penalties

A federal wire fraud charge generally alleges use of a telephone, email or other electronic communication to defraud an individual located in another state. A conviction, however, requires a prosecutor to prove that an individual used interstate communications with the intent to deceive. After reviewing evidence, a court determines whether a defendant meets the requirements for a wire fraud conviction. According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, deception with false pretenses, promises and misrepresentations may result in a sentence of up to 20 years imprisonment. Wire fraud may...

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Addressing civil rights violations in prisons

New York City and state prisons have been the subject of significant accusations regarding civil rights violations. While they are serving time as a penalty for criminal actions, prisoners deserve human dignity and respect. These are some of the key initiatives of the Prisoners' Rights Project, a nonprofit advocate of humane prison conditions in New York and worldwide. Access to medical care Prisoners have the right to comprehensive mental and physical health care. New state laws passed in recent years ensure that incarcerated individuals who have HIV will receive the care they need to...

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Disrespecting police may lead to an unlawful arrest

Whether you are attending a rally or simply running errands, you may encounter a member of law enforcement. While being polite may help you avoid a conflict, you have no general legal obligation to respect the police. Still, disrespectful behavior may lead to an unlawful arrest. If you believe an officer has arrested you for simply not being respectful enough, you may have a valid civil rights claim for this type of police misconduct. How respect-related arrests happen Regrettably, there are many new reports about officers making up facts to support arrests. These reports indicate that...

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What is white collar crime?

White collar crime is a term that generally applies to a crime that is of a financial nature. The FBI explains that it is generally fraud committed against the government or businesses. It typically will involve money.  The term comes from the fact that these crimes usually have offenders who are quite different from your typical criminal offender.  About white collar offenders Many people who commit white collar crimes have no former criminal history. They are often financially well off. Many hold important positions in the organization or business against which they commit the crime.  The...

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Prisoners facing rising rates of violence, sexual abuse

When you have a loved one in prison, you may find yourself worrying about him or her and the treatment your loved one receives behind bars. The number of prisoners making allegations about sexual assault, harassment and other forms of abuse has risen sharply in recent years, indicating that your concerns may have merit. According to Penn State University, the number of sexual harassment and assault complaints coming from American prisoners spiked 180% between 2011 and 2015. In 2011, prisoners filed 8,768 such allegations. By 2015, this figure had increased to 24,661 allegations. In New York,...

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Intoxication loophole in rape cases may close soon

Women are often extremely cautious with their drinks at bars and parties. One primary concern is that someone might spike the drink with drugs. Women in New York also have to keep the intoxication loophole in mind. This states that if a woman becomes intoxicated of her own free will, prosecutors may have no obligation to pursue rape charges. In late 2019, U.S. News reported that the New York governor had proposed changes to close this loophole. The governor believes that rapists might abuse this loophole to take advantage of intoxicated women on purpose. Expanding state definitions One way...

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Recognizing and responding to opioid overdose

The leading cause of accidental death in New York City is drug overdose. Most often, opioid drugs are responsible for overdoses.  Death due to opioid overdose is tragic. Fortunately, it is also preventable if one recognizes the signs of overdose and responds appropriately.  Recognizing the signs of opioid overdose The most dangerous symptoms of opioid overdose are slowed breathing and extreme drowsiness. Breathing can slow down to the point that it stops altogether. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, a person who has overdosed may exhibit confusion and pupils that have...

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