Advanced Federal Criminal Prosecution Seminar (3 credits)
Professors Anthony Brown & Susan Klein
This three-unit seminar will address the duties of federal criminal prosecutors as they take a case from investigation through habeas. We will detail the initial decision to investigate the matter, how to best utilize a grand jury to obtain documentary evidence, what factors go into making your charging decision, how to draft the indictment, how and whether to charge a corporate as well as an individual defendant, what defense arguments you should anticipate, how to calculate a sentence under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, and what appeal and habeas filings you might expect. The seminar is co-taught by Prof. Anthony Brown, who is Chief Assistant at the United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Texas (Austin and San Antonio). The seminar is required for the four students participating in the U.S.A.O. internship, but any interested students may join us (space permitting). This is a writing seminar, but rather than writing one long law review style piece, each student will draft an indictment, write a proffer and immunity letter, draft a plea and cooperation agreement, argue a pre-trial detention motion, calculate a federal sentence, and argue at a sentencing hearing. Your final grade is based 60% on the writing assignments and 40% on class participation.
The only prerequisite to this seminar is first-year criminal law. Many students find it helpful to have taken criminal procedure and federal criminal law as well, though we have had A+ students every year who have not taken those courses. The seminar is limited to between 12 and 16 students, and is not graded on the curve.