The Costa Rica ExtraditionWritten by William Freeman
Continued from page 1
looking at a sentence of ten years to life, it was a violation of Costa Rican Constitution. Costa Rica does not allow indeterminate sentences. This now required that United States provide Costa Rican Government a judicial promise I would not receive an indeterminate sentence. The problem with this is that judicial system in United States will not allow a judge to make any type of promise to another country, nor can he make a promise on a case that has not yet been tried in a United States court of law. I had United States in a “Catch 22” on this point. Under Costa Rican law, there is a five-year statute of limitations to arrest and convict a person. My charges stemmed from a 1991 charge so I was protected under this law. It was at this time that I noticed that Article 16b of Extradition Treaty was unconstitutional under Costa Rican Constitution which states that once a person is extradited, United States can also charge a person with other crimes that were not included in request for Extradition. With this information at hand, I began to prepare my defense what I believed to be a winning defense. I also decided that I needed a defense attorney to present my arguments. It was at this time that I hired my own attorney to do this for me. When he came to visit me at San Sebastian Prison and read documents I had prepared, he was confidant I would be set free. My new attorney accompanied me before a panel of a three-judge appeals court tribunal. The United States Embassy was also present for these proceedings. As I began to present my arguments, it was very apparent that Judges were not listening to me and that they, in fact, were once again trying to twist laws. When I argued that statute of limitations had expired, they responded by saying that there is no statute of limitations in United States. But Extradition laws clearly state that Extradition laws of country of residence shall govern Extradition proceedings. I could see that I was not being listened to and, therefore, finished presenting arguments I had prepared. I then returned to San Sebastian Prison to await decision.During days that followed, I tried to contact my attorney to inquire if he had any response from court and to get feedback from him. Once again, I ran into prior problem I had with my public defender; he would not answer my calls. I had a friend of mine try to call him and his calls also went unanswered. I then had someone go to his office, only to find that he had moved. When a friend on mine finally located him at his new office, he informed my friend that he had been confronted and told to drop my case if he had any political ambitions for he future. Once again, I found myself without an attorney. It was at this time that I decided to file an appeal with Supreme Court of Costa Rica. I filed appeal stating that (1) statute of limitations had lapsed; (2) United States had to provide a judicial promise, stating that I would not receive a indeterminate sentence; and (3) that conspiracy does not exist in Costa Rica; therefore, these proceedings should be dropped. The Supreme Court issued an order to United States Embassy, The Costa Rican Courts and immigration that I was not to be touched by anyone and that I could not be removed from Costa Rica.I then had another public defender appointed for me and she was, at first, very confidant that I would be set free. But I had been studying law that pertained to Article 16b of Treaty that allowed other charges to be filed against a person that was extradited. I had been visiting with another private attorney who was knowledgeable in Extradition law and together we prepared an argument to submit to Sala IV, Costa Rican Supreme Court, challenging Bi-Lateral Extradition Treaty between United States and Costa Rica, stating that Article 16b of Treaty was unconstitutional and that Treaty needed to be ratified to reflect this unconstitutional article. I had to submit argument two times. The first time, Sala IV returned my argument, stating that argument had merit but I lacked proper stamps that must be submitted with a brief and that I must follow their established format. They asked me to rewrite brief and resubmit it, at which time they would make their decision. In meantime, all Extradition proceedings would be suspended, not only against me, but also against any other persons that may be awaiting Extradition to United States.With this filed in Sala IV and having been accepted, along with Sala IV order stating that I could not be removed from Costa Rica Territory, I was confident I would go free. Legally, I had won on every point of law and I was not extraditable. I needed only to wait for ruling to be handed down that would set me free in Costa Rica.On May 9, 2001 my name was called in San Sebastian prison. I was put into a prison van and brought to airport, where two United States Marshals were waiting for me, along with a judge I had never seen, and representatives from United States Embassy. With my Supreme Court order in hand and under protest, I was illegally taken from Costa Rica and brought to United States, where I was eventually sentenced to five years in a federal prison for Conspiracy To Posses With Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Cocaine. I completed my sentence on November 21, 2003.For those of you wishing to contact me, please forward your inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.orgWritten by: William Warren Freeman Jr.
I am a 53 year old exconvicted drug felon that was Extradited from Costa Rica by Interpol after 9 years on the run and living in Costa Rica. I spent 15 months in a Costa Rica maximum security prison. I now live in Greenville South Carolina
Law School AccreditationWritten by David G. Hallstrom
Continued from page 1
Most states require that you meet certain requirements prior to being eligible to take their bar examination. The California Bar states "To be eligible to take California Bar Examination, one must have completed at least two years of college before beginning study of law or must have passed certain specified College Level Equivalency Program examinations before beginning law study and must have graduated from a law school approved by American Bar Association or accredited by Committee of Bar Examiners of The State Bar of California or have completed four years of law study at an unaccredited or correspondence law school registered with Committee or studied law in a law office or judge's chambers in accordance with Rules Regulating Admission to Practice Law in California." Most states have similar requirements.
The foregoing suggests that many states will not allow, non ABA accredited out of state law school graduates to take their bar examination, unless they attended school in that state or a school that is certified by that state. Therefore students graduating from non ABA accredited law schools may not be allowed to practice in any state other than state they attended school. Note: Some states have reciprocal agreements with other states allowing attorneys registered in one state to become a member of bar in another state without taking a bar examination in new state.
Notwithstanding foregoing, there are many fine law schools in this country that are not ABA accredited. Additionally, many ABA accredited schools do not offer night time or part time classes. Finally, there are many more applicants that spaces available in ABA accredited schools, forcing many good students to attend other schools. Therefore, accreditation should not be your only criteria in choosing a law school or in deceiding whether or not to hire a particular law school graduate.
Permission is given to reprint this article providing credit is given to author, David G. Hallstrom, and a link is listed to Resources For Attorneys owner of this article. Anyone or any company reprinting this article without giving proper credit and correct link, is doing so without permission and will be subject to legal action.