Decades ago, the Supreme Court made an exception to the Fifth Amendment's double-hazard clause and is now being asked to reconsider the precedent.
The so-called "Exemption for individual states" provides that a person can be sentenced twice for the same offense if the prosecution takes place before federal and federal courts. The reasoning is that the states and the federal government are different states.
Critics claim that today harassment of defendants – especially the poor – is incurring, and can not afford to fight on two fronts. They also point to a recent trend that they believe has led to an increase in public prosecution in areas traditionally left to states.
In addition, this could also affect the President's pardoning power, raising the question of what would happen if the President pardoned a person like his former election chairman Paul Manafort for federal offenses. Under the exception, it could be conceivable that a state would be prosecuted for the same offenses. This could not be the case if the court made the exception.
The case before the judges on Thursday is brought in by Terance Gamble, who was convicted in 2008 and 201
An appeals court ruled against him, citing the Supreme Court's precedent setting "the prosecution in federal and state courts" Court of First Instance does not violate the double-hazard clause because the state and federal governments are separate states ,
Gamble turned to the Supreme Court and ordered it to override the separate rule of doctrine.
In court papers alleged Gamble's attorneys said that "the centuries-old" criminal justice system operated by federal and state agencies operated with little to no overlap and state criminal law was dominant.
In modern times it is said that has changed.
Presidential Pardon Limits
While the case does not touch the investigator's investigation, some believe it may affect Manafort, and the President has not ruled out the possibility of a pardon if the Supreme Court exploits the exception, a state could theoretically prosecute him.
"There is more than nothing to the Besor "If a state crashes the doctrine of separate dominions, a state could not prosecute someone like Paul Manafort for federal crimes for which he could be pardoned," said CNN legal analyst professor of law at the University of Texas, Steve Vladeck.
"But the criminal jurisdiction of states tends to be so much wider than the federal government that such a move does not close the door to potential criminal liability in such cases," Vladeck added.
Adam Courland, a law professor at the Howard University School of Law, doubts that the case will affect the Mueller investigation.
"The law of New York already has a law that restricts some prosecutors based on the same behavior as a former federal attorney," he said in a statement.
The Department of Justice has urged the court to uphold the exemption of individual states, citing the intention of the Framers.
"The Framers drafted the constitution to manifest the sovereign power of the United States and states, including the power to enforce their own criminal laws," Deputy Attorney General Jeff Wall argued in court papers.
Wall also argued After many years of politics, the government pursued a public prosecutor's office only when the state case "demonstrably failed to raise much public interest".