ABA NewsNational security, implicit bias among ­criminal justice agenda at ABA meeting in SF

National security concerns, including border protection and cybersecurity; the privacy implications of surveillance technology; and practical strategies to eliminate implicit bias in the justice system are chief among criminal law issues that will be explored at the 2016 American Bar Association Annual Meeting Aug. 4-9 in San Francisco.

High-profile speakers at the meeting include FBI Director James Comey on emerging issues in national security and law enforcement (Aug. 5, 4 p.m.) and U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Bernice Donald on mitigating implicit bias among judges and lawyers (Aug. 5, 1:45 p.m.). Also, Hollywood writers Jonathan Shapiro and David E. Kelley (both of "The Practice," "Boston Legal" and other iconic legal TV) examine pop culture and the perception of justice (Aug. 5, 10:30 a.m.) and O. J. Simpson prosecutor-turned-novelist Marcia Clark discusses her high-profile cases and writing career (Aug. 5, 5:30 p.m.).

In addition to the more than 1,400 events at this premier gathering of legal professionals, the ABA House of Delegates - the association's policymaking body - will meet at 9 a.m. on Aug. 8-9.

Criminal justice programs include:

- "U.S. Border Wars: Preventing Terrorism and Protecting Children" Representatives from the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Foreign Intelligence and Surveillance Court will be among panelists who will explore what our nation is doing to provide border security and protection in the homeland. Discussion will include the investigation and arrest of suspected terrorists; screening visitors who come across our borders; tracking visa over-stays; maintaining no-fly and criminal record databases; and the temporary care of vulnerable populations such as children.

- "Today's Interpretation of Computer Laws Developed for a Bygone Age" - Panelists including San Francisco attorney Elliot R. Peters, who represented internet activist Aaron Swartz will explore the implications of decades-old federal statutes governing computer crimes that now create ambiguity in the criminal justice system in the face of advancing technology.

- "Corruption's New Arena: International Sports in a Post-FIFA World" With a focus on the World Cup and Olympics, a panel of experts will explore the corruption in international sports, the circumstances that have encouraged it and solutions for the future.

- "Interpreting US SEC 2011: Cybersecurity Risk Guidance" - Experts will examine implementation of the SEC's 2011 Cybersecurity Risk Guidance by covered entities that must develop a flexible, living and structured approach to managing cyber risk emanating from aggressive nation-states, transnational organized crime, hacktivists and others.

- "Pretrial Justice: Maximizing Due Process and Public Safety" A panel will explore the legal foundations of bail decision making and relevant research, with a focus on evolving case law and the work of the ABA Pretrial Justice Committee.

- "Pop Culture and the Perception of Justice: A Conversation with Screenwriters David E. Kelley and Jonathan Shapiro" - As Amazon Prime debuts their new legal serial called "Goliath" later this year, frequent collaborators David E. Kelley ("The Practice," "L.A. Law") and Jonathan Shapiro ("The Black List," "Boston Legal"), will examine how TV and real-life courtroom cases influence the public's perception of justice.

- "Creating a Conscious Prosecutor: The Client Pre-Indictment" - Experts will discuss the issue of implicit bias in prosecution, examine the dangers, discuss tools and solutions, as well as unveil "The Conscious Prosecutor" Program sponsored by the ABA in conjunction with the National Black Prosecutors Association and the National District Attorneys Association. It will be the first program of its kind to address the issue of implicit bias directly nationwide.

- "Volkswagen Emissions One Year Later: Litigation and Science Update" - One year after Volkswagen admitted that it violated federal law by installing vehicle software that circumvents federal emissions standards, panelists will discuss the investigatory response, including criminal or civil sanctions and possible class-action litigation seeking remedies for consumer fraud. 10:30-Noon, Westin St. Francis, 12th Floor, St. Francis Suite, East Room.

- "Defending the Indefensible: Navigating the Strategic and Ethical Landscape of Defending Clients Who Have Engaged in Indefensible Conduct" - Top attorneys will discuss their secrets and strategies for defending clients who have engaged in clearly indefensible conduct, while navigating the moral, ethical, regulatory issues at hand.

- "Civil Labor Enforcement, Private Claims and Supple Chain Accountability: What You Can Do To Help Fight Human Trafficking" - Experts will discuss the role of civil labor enforcement agencies in addressing worker vulnerabilities and employer violations of human trafficking laws and the role of civil litigation in bringing compensation and dignity to victims. Topics will include the California Foreign Labor Recruiters Regulation law and new guidance from the California attorney general on the California Supply Chains Transparency Act.

- "Implicit Bias and De-Biasing Strategies: A Workshop for Judges and Lawyers" - A leading academic, a federal judge and two lawyers will host an interactive session to help attendees develop techniques and strategies to mitigate for implicit bias.

- "The New Frontier Surveillance Technology and the Law" - Panelists will discuss how smart phones, GPS and other new technologies that can be used in surveillance have resulted in privacy concerns, requiring judges to reconsider some of the traditional doctrines that have governed Fourth Amendment jurisprudence.

- "Annual Survey of Supreme Court Decisions - Criminal Cases" - U.S. Attorney Brian Stretch of the Northern District of California will be among Bay Area panelists who will review and discuss the criminal cases that came before the Supreme Court during the current term.

- "Ferguson's Fault Lines: Reflecting on Ferguson and the Lawyers' Role in Restoring Justice" - Panelists including San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi will examine the legal issues surrounding the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson two years after his death and the thousands of nearly identical communities throughout the United States grappling with similar issues of alleged racially based police violence.

- "Emerging Issues in National Security and Law Enforcement" - FBI Director James Comey will be among experts who will examine the use of emerging technology by criminals and terrorists to evade detection. Given the recent FBI-Apple encryption dispute, does the FBI have the tools it needs to address such problems?

- "High on Their Own Supply? Legal Issues Facing the Burgeoning New Medical Marijuana Industry" - Professionals in the legal marijuana industry, including a compliance officer for medical marijuana companies, investor and financial analyst will debate a host of issues, such as the conflict between federal and state law, quality control and industry standards, as the legal market for the drug tops approximately $3 billion, with 23 states legalizing marijuana for medical purposes.

- "Sexual Assault on College Campuses: Balancing the Rights and Interests of the Accused and the Victim" - Experts will offer practical guidance on handling sexual violence on campus for colleges and universities as well as for those who represent them. Discussion topics will include balancing the due process rights of the accused with the interests of the victim; Title IX complaints and compliance; best practices and policies for handling allegations of sexual assault and other campus violence; the issue of consent; and best practices for reporting allegations to the government and the police.

- "How the Militarization of Law Enforcement Has Affected Peace Officers and the Communities They Serve" - Representatives from the San Francisco Public Defender's Office, the Coalition for Police Accountability and the NAACP's Ethics Project will be among panelists who will discuss the increasing militarization of law enforcement, which has led to frequent confrontations that escalate to lethal force, particularly in communities of color, and consider forward-thinking proposals to address the problems.

Published: Tue, Aug 02, 2016

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