"Repeated punishment for the same conduct has the potential to undermine the spirit of fair play and the rule of law," said Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the No. 2 official at the Justice Department. "This is why the department is committed to making a concerted effort to apportion penalties among both international and domestic agencies, where appropriate."
Speaking before the annual conference of the National Alliance For Drug Endangered Children, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions called America's overdose epidemic "the top lethal issue" in the United States. To fight it, he urged social workers and law enforcement personnel to "create and foster a culture that's hostile to drug use."
A large number of common forensic techniques including bite marks, hair analysis, ballistics, fingerprint IDs and footprint analysis were called into question last year. The President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, a nonpartisan group established by Congress in 1976, issued a report that debunked the evidence produced by the techniques as unscientific.
Federal criminal defendants are being denied their full right to confront the evidence against them, according to a lawsuit recently brought by the American Civil Liberties Union. This is because the U.S. Department of Justice doesn't notify defendants when evidence against them was obtained via secret wiretaps and other surveillance under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act or the Wiretap Act.
The U.S. Probation and Pretrial Services has apparently been using lie detector tests as on criminal defendants in what it refers to as "therapeutic polygraphy." That this has been going on for decades comes as a surprise, since in 2004 the American Psychological Association said that there is "little evidence that polygraph tests can accurately detect lies."
The Associated Press has obtained information about an upcoming policy guidance memo that would urge prosecutors to file the most serious charges they believe they can prove in court. This would be a reversal of the Obama Justice Department's guidance that low-level offenders should not be sentenced to long-term incarceration.