Thursday, June 17, 2010

University of Sydney Evidence Conference

21st Century Challenges in Evidence Law: International and Comparative Perspectives

2-day Workshop, 24-25 September 2010

On 24-25 September 2010, Sydney Law School and the Ross Parsons Centre of Commercial, Corporate and Taxation Law will host a 2-day workshop entitled 21st Century Challenges in Evidence Law: International and Comparative Perspectives, at the New Law Building at the main Camperdown campus of the University of Sydney.

The themes of the workshop are

Conceptualising Proof (including Professor Peter Tillers, Cardozo School of Law);
Technological change and Evidence law (chaired by Stephen Odgers SC, Adjunct Professor, University of Sydney);
Comparative and Human Rights Perspectives (including Professor Ian Dennis, University College London); and,
Expert Evidence and Juridical Knowledge (including Professor Gary Edmond, University of New South Wales and Professor Simon Cole, University of California, Irvine).

Expressions of interest are sought in relation to these and other 21st Century Challenges in Evidence Law (eg proving sexual assault; victim’s rights; vulnerable witnesses). Abstracts are required by 11 July 2010.

A selection of papers arising out of the workshop will be published in a special edition of Sydney Law Review (a refereed A* journal) in 2012. Submissions of papers will be required by 1 April 2011 to allow time for refereeing, revisions and the joining of issues between related articles.

Attendance is free, and the conference dinner (Fri 24th) will be subsidised. Please direct any questions, and your abstracts, to the Convenors, Miiko Kumar (, +61 2 9351 0261) or David Hamer (, +61 2 9351 0242). Abstracts are required by 11 July 2010.


The dynamic evidence page

It's here: the law of evidence on Spindle Law. See also this post and this post.

Crime, Punishment, and Stupidity in New Jersey

"Jailing Leona Beldini wasn't easy, judge's scolding was minimal," Jersey Journal (June 17, 2010):
"As you from crimes would pardon'd be, Let your indulgence set me free."
Shakespeare, The Tempest
Brian Neary, the Hoboken criminal defense lawyer known for courtroom antics and merciless cross-examinations, tried a different approach the other day to keep his convicted client out of jail. He quoted Shakespeare.
It didn't work.
Former Jersey City deputy mayor Leona Beldini got three years.
Of course, the sentence could have been worse, so maybe his recital did move federal Judge Jose Linares.
Linares, clearly uncomfortable about jailing a 75-year-old with a heart condition, imposed a sentence below federal guidelines that called for 41 months and also spared her the usual harsh criticisms some judges heap on convicted clients.
The worst he said was "any reasonable person" should have seen Solomon Dwek, the corrupt government witness who brought her down, "was a crook." He was right.
If stupidity were a capital crime, the politicians nailed by Dwek would all have been hanged by now.
But Neary does us a favor by citing these lines from Shakespeare because their meaning - from a soliloquy by Prospero, a wronged but forgiving man - has been debated for centuries as among the Bard's most ambiguous.
As ambiguous, really, as this corruption sting that brought Beldini to prison gates for the crime of playing a role - an ambiguous one - in obtaining $20,000 in contributions to the campaign of a mayor, Jerramiah Healy, who was already awash in $3 million in campaign funds and didn't need it. A mayor who was never charged.
[snip, snip]
After he ordered Beldini jailed, Linares, who has said he hates sentencings, walked through a crowd in the lobby on his way to lunch. Someone called out, "How are you feeling, judge?"
"Not good," said Linares. Ambiguously.


The dynamic evidence page
It's here: the law of evidence on Spindle Law. See also this post and this post.