CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, March 18, 2005

New Article Spotlight: Collateral Sanctions

UC Davis CrimProf Robert Mikos has a paper coming out in the Cornell Law Review; here's an abstract:

Rob_mikos_picture_2 Enforcing State Law in Congress's Shadow analyzes federal statutes that impose sanctions (such as deportation, or loss of firearms privileges) on individuals who have been convicted of state crimes. It demonstrates that by raising the stakes involved in state criminal cases, federal sanctions may cause defendants to contest state charges more vigorously, thereby producing one of two unintended consequences. First, the sanctions may make it more costly for state prosecutors to enforce state laws. Second, due to resource constraints or dislike of the federal sanctions, state prosecutors may circumvent them by manipulating charging decisions. But in the process, state prosecutors may have to reduce state sanctions as well, thereby undermining deterrence and the fair application of both state and federal law. The article theorizes that the severity of the sanctions and the emphasis they place upon state outcomes, among other factors, determine how much the sanctions will distort state proceedings. It then substantiates the theory with five in-depth case studies of federal sanctions: deporting criminal aliens, barring domestic abusers from possessing firearms, and disqualifying drug offenders from receiving federal welfare, public housing, and student financial aid. The full text of the article is available on the Social Science Research Network:

[Jack Chin]

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