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Pirates on trial - mock trial, that is

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Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law professor George Edwards posed the question, “What would you do if a pirate were to appear as a piracy defendant in your courtroom?” to a group of Indiana judges this summer. Serving as a professor at the Indiana Judges Graduate Program held June 3 – 7 in Nashville, Ind., Edwards led 30 state court judges through a mock trial designed to demonstrate how international law is relevant to Indiana law and practice.

Judges played the roles of prosecutors, defense counsel, witnesses and judges in a mock case involving two young Somali citizens who were charged with engaging in piracy of an Indiana ship attacked while sailing off the coast of East Africa. The hearing focused on whether an Indiana state court could conduct a trial involving the alleged pirates, Somali twins who claimed to be juveniles. Participants argued points of international human rights law, U.S. constitutional law, and Indiana criminal law and procedures.

The Indiana Graduate Program for Judges is sponsored by the Indiana Judicial Center and is part of an effort to promote continuing education for judges.
 

judges-photo-june-2012-15col.jpg (Photo submitted)

Shown here in the front row (from left) are Senior Judge Betty Barteau, Indiana Justice Robert Rucker, Hamilton Superior Judge Gail Bardach, Vanderburgh Superior Judge Richard D’Amour, Elkhart Superior Judge Stephen Bowers, Edwards, Madison Superior Judge G. George Pancol, Cass Superior Judge Rick Maughmer, Tippecanoe Superior Judge Michael Morrissey, Marion Superior Judge Carol Orbison, Indiana Court of Appeals Judge Elaine Brown, Allen Superior Magistrate Marcia Linsky, Hendricks Superior Judge Stephenie LeMay-Luken, LaPorte Superior Judge Kathleen Lang, LaPorte Circuit Magistrate Greta Friedman, Lake Superior Magistrate Michael Pagano, and Lake Superior Judge Elizabeth Tavitas.

In the back row (from left) are Marion Superior Judge James Osborn, Indiana Court of Appeals Judge John Baker, Dearborn Superior Judge Jonathan Cleary, Indiana Justice Frank Sullivan Jr., Jasper Superior Judge James Ahler, Benton Circuit Judge Rex Kepner, Johnson Superior Judge Kevin Barton, Clark Circuit Judge Jerry Jacobi, LaPorte Superior Judge Richard Stalbrink, Hamilton Circuit Judge Paul Felix, Noble Superior Judge Robert Kirsch, Bartholomew Superior Judge Kathleen Coriden, DeKalb Superior Judge Monte Brown, Marion Superior Magistrate Geoffrey Gaither, and I.U. Maurer School of Law professor Charles Geyh.

Standing on the back porch (from left) are Rt. Hon. Lord Iain Bonomy of Scotland, New York Law School Professor Edward Purcell, Putnam Circuit Judge Matthew Headley, Senior Judge Randall T. Shepard, Monroe Circuit Judge Valeri Haughton, Allen Superior Judge Fran Gull, and Marion Superior Judge Marc Rothenberg.•

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  1. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  2. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  3. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

  4. "...not those committed in the heat of an argument." If I ever see a man physically abusing a woman or a child and I'm close enough to intercede I will not ask him why he is abusing her/him. I will give him a split second to cease his attack and put his hands in the air while I call the police. If he continues, I will still call the police but to report, "Man down with a gunshot wound,"instead.

  5. And so the therapeutic state is weaonized. How soon until those with ideologies opposing the elite are disarmed in the name of mental health? If it can start anywhere it can start in the hoosiers' slavishly politically correct capital city.

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