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March 30, 2012

Obama's Uncle Temporarily Loses License After OUI Case

According to a report by WBZ 1030's Lana Jones, the half brother of President Obama's late father, will lose his license for 45 days, as of today after a hearing in Framingham District Court.

Oyango Obama was arrested August 2011, in Framingham, MA after a police officer claimed Obama had made a rolling stop at a stop sign. The officer alleges that this caused him to almost crashing into Obama's SUV. His blood alcohol registered 0.14, the Massachusetts state limit is 0.08.

Obama's attorney told the judge that there are sufficient facts in the case against his client. He agreed to a continuance without a finding, avoiding a plea of guilty to drunk driving and the charge will be dismissed, if he stays out of trouble for one year. He will lose his license for 45 days and pay fines and fees of $1,000.

"By admitting to sufficient facts today to operating under the influence and failure to yield at an intersection, the defendant has admitted responsibility for the essence of the crime he committed and has now been held accountable for his actions," District Attorney Gerry Leone said in a statement.

Immigration investigators became aware of Obama after the August arrest and claim he violated a 1992 order to return to Kenya. This case is still before the immigration court.

Analysis by Parker | Scheer LLP Attorney Francis T. O'Brien, Jr.:

The fact that this case involves a relative of the president is irrelevant. The defendant in this case received no "special" consideration from the court. What this case illustrates is the fact that defendants in drunk driving/OUI/DWI cases do not always wish to proceed to trial. Sometimes clients are interested in having their cases resolved quickly. Reasons vary from financial (legal fees are significantly less in cases where defendants advise us that they wish to resolve the case via some form of plea bargain, rather than proceeding to trial), to emotional (some clients simply do not like going to court and want the process to end as quickly as possible), to practical (some clients need to obtain a hardship license for work purposes as soon as possible, and hardship licenses may not be obtained during the period of time waiting for trial), to self recognition (some clients simply believe that they are guilty of the offense and want to "cut their losses"), to criminal record preservation (some clients want us to attempt to preserve their lack of a criminal record by obtaining for them a "continuance without a finding" such as the defendant Obama obtained in this case).

This case also illustrates the frequently occurring situation where a non United States citizen is a defendant in a criminal case. It is imperative that a non citizen be represented by an experienced criminal defense attorney IN CONJUNCTION WITH an experienced immigration attorney. In my opinion, although some attorneys dabble in both criminal and immigration courts, it is extremely rare that an attorney can accurately be described as an expert in both criminal and immigration law. At Parker | Scheer, we never resolve a case involving a non citizen without consulting with an immigration expert. We are affiliated with immigration experts and we are also willing to work in conjunction with our clients' own immigration attorneys.

We advise every client on the various options that are available to them. We give them candid opinions on the likelihood of achieving the result that the client wants. Ultimately, however, we respect the choice of each individual client and attempt to obtain the desired result for each client. There is no blueprint to be applied in every case. Each client and each case is different and must be treated on an individual basis.


Continue reading "Obama's Uncle Temporarily Loses License After OUI Case" »

March 27, 2012

Red Sox Reliever Bobby Jenks Arrested

Local and national news outlets report that Red Sox relief pitcher, Bobby Jenks, was arrested early Friday morning in Fort Myers, Florida for suspected DUI, Property Damage and Leaving the Scene of an Accident. It was further reported that Lee County police officers stopped Jenks's vehicle after apparently observing erratic driving.

It was further alleged that Jenks made a number of statements to the investigating officers during the motor vehicle stop, concerning his "erratic" driving, ingestion of medication and an accident that he was involved in outside of a Florida nightclub earlier in the evening. Jenks was reportedly arrested at approximately 3:43 AM, and released from police custody a few hours later, presumably on his own personal recognizance.

Red Sox General Manager Ben Charington reportedly responded to the allegations via text message, indicating that Red Sox team officials are aware of the incident, and currently gathering information regarding the allegations.

To read the full article, please click here.

Attorney Tofani, of counsel to Parker|Scheer LLP and an associate of the firm's criminal practice group, reflects:

Reviewing the complete police report would allow for a more complete picture of the allegations that are involved with the reported incident involving Lee County police officers and Red Sox relief pitcher Bobby Jenks. At first glance, the most problematic elements with respect to Jenks's defense are the reported statements that he provided during police questioning. As a general rule, I advise my clients to be cooperative and respectful when stopped by police; but, to politely exercise their constitutionally protected right to remain silent. Despite the commonly cited fear of angering police by doing so, in my experience, most police officers respect the polite and respectful exercising of one's right against self incrimination.

The rules of evidence generally prohibit the inclusion of out of court statements, when they are offered as proof of the matter asserted - otherwise known as hearsay. But, one of the most commonly utilized exceptions to the rule against hearsay is the admission of out of court statements offered for their truth when such statements are declarations made by the party opponent. In other words, when the defendant in a criminal matter makes statements out of court, the prosecution, as the "party opponent," can introduce such statements as evidence under this exception to the rule against hearsay.

Accordingly, if the news reports are accurate, the statements that Jenks offered during police questioning will likely be introduced as incriminating evidence against him to prove: operation; impairment; consciousness of guilt; intent; and, destruction of property. These are merely a few examples of the elements that the prosecution will likely use Jenks's out of court statements as evidence in support thereof. Therefore, these admissions could prove to be a substantial obstacle for his criminal defense attorney, in furthering Jenks's defense to the charges of Driving Under the Influence, Destruction of Personal Property and Leaving the Scene of an Accident.

Often, members of the criminal defense litigation group at Parker|Scheer LLP successfully argue motions to suppress physical evidence and statements that is being offered against our clients. When preparing Jenks's defense, an experienced criminal defense attorney would likely scrutinize the totality of the circumstances surrounding these alleged admissions. For example, I would be interested in determining whether the statements were the result of improper police interrogation and whether Jenks was entitled to being advised of his rights to remain silent at that point. More specifically, if the officers continued to pepper Jenks with questions that were specifically designed to elicit incriminating responses during a custodial interrogation, and failed to advise Jenks of his Miranda rights, he would have a colorable argument in support of suppression of the damaging statements.


Continue reading "Red Sox Reliever Bobby Jenks Arrested" »

January 6, 2011

Actress Jamie Pressly Spends Night in Jail for Alleged DUI

Actress Jamie Pressly was arrested in Santa Monica, California, after committing a traffic violation Wednesday night and allegedly driving drunk. Pressly was held over night and released on $15,000 bail. Her blood-alcohol level has not been released.

Read the full Boston Herald article: Jamie Pressly arrested for drunken driving

September 22, 2010

Paris Hilton Denied Entry to Japan Airport Just a Day After Pleading Guilty to Drug Charges in Las Vegas Case

On Monday, September 20th, Paris Hilton plead guilty to two misdemeanor cocaine possession charges. In exchange for her plea, she received probation and a one-year suspended sentence. The suspended sentence should come as a wake-up call to the hotel heiress after a host or arrests, stint in jail for an OUI conviction, and other drug charges. In fact, during the plea hearing, the judge warned Hilton that if she does not obey her probation conditions, she will likely land behind bars. Hilton admitted to knowingly possessing the cocaine, and for the sentence the judge dropped the felony possession charges down to misdemeanors as part of the plea agreement. As part of her probation, she must pay over $2,000 in fines, serve 200 hours of community service and complete a mandatory outpatient substance abuse program.

The story of Ms. Hilton gets even more newsworthy when yesterday, on Tuesday September 21st, only a day after her plea deal, Hilton was detained at a Japan airport. At Narita Airport, Japanese immigration officials delayed Hilton's entrance to the country. Under Japanese law, immigration authorities are allowed to deny entry to the country to those who have recently been convicted of drug-related offenses. The policy is both a part of Japan's strict anti-drug laws, and to prevent traveler's possessing drugs from entering the country.

This morning, Japanese officials officially denied Hilton entry to the country, and she was forced to board a plane for a different country. She was scheduled to appear at a news conference in Tokyo to promote her fashion and fragrance line, but this conference is now canceled. This would have been the first appearance on her Asian tour to promote her new stores and lines in Asia. However, both Japan and Malaysia have very strict anti-drug laws which may be an issue for the recently probated heiress. (Hilton is also scheduled to appear in Malaysia and open stores carrying her line in the next few days).

Paris Hilton Pleads Guilty to two Misdemeanor Charges in Cocaine Bust, Gets One Year Probation

Paris Hilton Detained at Airport in Japan

September 15, 2010

Paris Hilton Arrested on Felony Drug Possession Charges in Las Vegas

On August 28, Paris Hilton, the 29-year old Hotel Heiress, was arrested in the swanky Wynn Las Vegas Resort on felony drug possession charges. While driving on down Las Vegas Boulevard, Hilton was pulled over when Las Vegas Metro police believed marijuana smoke was wafting from a black Cadillac Escalade, driven by her boyfriend, Las Vegas nightclub mogul Cy Watts. After being pulled over and being asked to exit the vehicle, Hilton was taken into the hotel "to keep her safe" from the crowds forming outside. According to Metro Police, once inside the hotel, Hilton took a tube of lip balm from her purse. Then a plastic bundle containing a white, powder substance fell from her purse and onto the floor of the Wynn Resort.

This arrest has garnered lots of media coverage, not only due to Hilton's celebrity status, but her inconsistent statements in her defense. Originally, Hilton claimed the purse was not hers, and that she was only borrowing it from a friend. Then, she stated she didn't know cocaine was in there, and that she thought it was gum. So basically, the purse isn't hers, but if it is hers, she didn't know cocaine was inside. Sounds like Hilton is trying to have her coke, "cake," and eat it too.

Hilton and Watts were both arrested and taken into custody. After tests conducted by the Metro police, the substance tested positive as cocaine, but the exact amount of cocaine was not disclosed. After being booked, Hilton was released on her own recognizance. If Hilton is convicted of this drug possession felon, she would likely get probation. However, any violation of her probation could result in one to four years in jail. And with her track record of numerous probation violations, and recent stints in a Los Angeles county jail for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charges, the likelihood that Hilton will do hard time for this charge is increased.

These felony drug charges follow a recent history or drug used by the hotel heirness. Just this summer, Hilton was arrested in South Africa after smoking marijuana following the Brazil-Netherlands World Cup match. The case was dropped at a midnight court hearing.

As for Hilton's boyfriend, Watts, he was held pending an upcoming court appearance on a DUI charge. Watts is the managing partner, along with his twin brother, of Tryst Nightclub, the Wynn Las Vegas swanky club.

Paris Hilton Arrested for Cocaine Possession

Paris Hilton Cocaine Defense has "Big Problems"

August 11, 2010

Amorello Charged with DUI and Leaving the Scene after Causing Property Damage

Big Dig.jpg

Haverhill, MA - August 10, 2010--Matt Amorello, former chairman of the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), was arrested at 2:00am, Tuesday. Charged with drunk driving and leaving the scene after causing property damage, Amorello was photographed at the scene of the arrest apparently in and out of consciousness. He refused to get out of his vehicle when asked, was pepper sprayed twice, and had to be forcible extracted by three officers.

Amorello resigned from his position with the MTA July 27, 2006 after Milena Del Valle of Jamaica Plain was killed when a Big Dig ceiling panel collapsed onto the car in which she was riding earlier that month. Her husband Angel Del Valle who was driving was injured.

As MTA chair, Amorello over-saw the firms involved in the Big Dig from 2002-2006. Certain standard building procedures were not followed resulting in the ultimately fatal structural collapse. Since his resignation, Amorello and his wife divorced and his home was foreclosed on. Some of Amorello's friends and former colleagues call him a scapegoat for the underlying Big Dig corruption; others think he is responsible for the corruption; still others see his rise and fall from a position he was most likely unqualified for as a metaphor for Boston politics. Amorello is reportedly being treated at University of Massachusetts Memorial Hospital.

Boston.com August 10, 2010 For Amorello, a long slide

July 22, 2010

Vince Neil Arrested for DUI

LAS VEGAS STRIP - At the very end of June (June 29th) Vince Neil, 49, (the lead singer of Motley Crue) was pulled over for DUI in his Lamborghini and arrested on suspicion of drunken driving near the Las Vegas Strip. Neil has declared that he was completely sober during the stop. During an interview right before his arrest, Neil revealed that he has not used drugs in 20 years, and has since stopped abusing alcohol.

The Motley Crue singer has been released after posting a $2,000 bail from the Clark County jail and is due in court in September. Neil owns two bars called "Feelgoods Rock Bad and Grill" and "Vince Neil Tres Rios Cantina" at the Las Vegas Hilton, as well as tattoo shops around Vegas.

If you need a Boston, Massachusetts Criminal Defense Lawyer for a drug offense or a masschusetts dui offense please contact Attorney Francis T. Obrien today at (617) 512-0939.

July 7, 2010

Lindsay Lohan Sentenced for DUI & Drug Probation Violations

According to Boston.com, actress Lindsay Lohan was sentenced yesterday to three months of jail time and drug rehabilitation. Lohan was sentenced by Superior Court Judge Marsha Revel, for violating her probation for a case involving drug use and DUI. Lohan has missed nine treatment classes since December.

Upon hearing of her three-month sentence Lohan and her family immediately started to cry. Lohan said, "I did do everything I was told to do and did the best I could to balance jobs and showing up,'' Lohan told the judge. "It wasn't vacation, it wasn't some sort of a joke.''

The judge said of Lohan's apology, that it was like "somebody who cheats and thinks it isn't cheating if she doesn't get caught.''

The judge based her decision on testimony from employees of the court-mandated alcohol treatment program. The three-month sentences was three times as long as the term the prosecution had sought. Lohan is scheduled to surrender to authorities on July 20th. Until that time she will need to wear an ankle alcohol monitor.

It's common for high profile or celebrity offenders to be sentenced to serve rehabilitation program as part of their sentence and to receive harsher sentences for repeat offenses and probation violations. In this instance it's more than likely for the judge to render a more severe sentence to make an example of the celebrity offender.

A recent Massachusetts "celebrity" example in for DUI probation violations is former Massachusetts State Senator, Anthony Gallucio. Gallucio was sentenced to one year in jail in January, after violating the terms of his probation for a hit and run accident. Gallucio will receive a supervised release and be out on parole on July 14th. He will also be mandated to participate in an Alcohol treatment program.

Sources.

Boston.com July 7th 2010 Lindsay Lohan sentenced to jail

Somerville News July 7th 2010 Galluccio Granted Parole