HISPANIC BAR ASSOCIATION

ORANGE COUNTY

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  • 23 May 2016 10:08 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    2016/2017 Orange County Grand Jury Selected

    Santa Ana, CA – Nineteen Orange County residents were selected to serve on the
    Orange County Grand Jury for the term that begins July 1. Hon. Charles Margines,
    Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of Orange County, presided over the May 18 court hearing with Alan Carlson, Chief Executive Officer and Jury Commissioner, randomly pulling cards printed with candidate names from the grand jury box, as required by statute.

    The new Grand Jury panel is comprised of 13 men and 6 women who range in age from 54 to 78 years old. More than 140 Orange County residents applied to serve. The 26 judges of the Grand Jury Recruitment/Selection Committee reviewed applications and selected top candidates who were then interviewed by teams of two judges from the committee.

    Superior Court judges approved the final slate of candidates by a majority vote.
    The California Penal Code requires that the Grand Jury be selected by a random drawing of no less than 25 and no more than 30 individuals, who proportionally represent the five supervisorial districts of the County. The first 19 names drawn constitute the Grand Jury, with the remaining individuals selected as alternates in the order drawn. Alternates may be called upon to serve in the event that any acting members cannot complete the one year term. The grand jurors and alternates will attend a mandatory four-day training program in June.

    The 19 members of the newly selected Grand Jury will take the oath of office on July 1 at 10:00 a.m. in Department C1 of the Superior Court of Orange County. The names of the Grand Jury members and alternates are listed on the following page, in the order of their selection.

  • 10 May 2016 10:35 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    The United States District Court, Central District of California, is seeking applications from qualified individuals interested in serving as Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference Lawyer Representatives.  Please refer to the link below for more information.

    https://www.cacd.uscourts.gov/news/seeking-applications-ninth-circuit-judicial-conference-lawyer-representatives

  • 28 Apr 2016 10:21 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    The Judicial Council’s Executive and Planning Committee is accepting nominations through Friday, May 6 for positions on many of our advisory bodies.  I invite you to consider submitting your own nomination or nominating someone who you believe qualified to serve.
     
    Advisory bodies are vital contributors to the judicial branch’s policymaking process.  We rely on the expertise of those who volunteer and participate.  These positions can also represent an opportunity to contribute and gain experience at the statewide level.  Here are some of the advisory bodies now seeking nominees:
    ·        Appellate Advisory Committee
    ·        Court Interpreters Advisory Panel
    ·        Civil Jury Instructions
    ·        Judicial Branch Workers’ Compensation Program
    ·        Probate and Mental Health
    ·        Trial Court Facility Modification
    ·        Workload Assessment
    ·        Criminal Jury Instructions
     
    For further information and an application, please see the California Courts website at: http://www.courts.ca.gov/4650.htm.  You are also welcome to contact Judicial Council staff member Maria Kwan at Maria.Kwan@jud.ca.gov.

  • 25 Apr 2016 11:04 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    The Recruitment Notice for Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Trial Attorney Panel may be located using the following link:

    http://www.cacd.uscourts.gov/news/recruitment-notice-cja-trial-attorney-panel-0

  • 18 Apr 2016 4:35 PM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    Comments sought:
     
    Thirty-six (36) new proposals to amend the California Rules of Court, Judicial Council forms and legislation have been posted to the California Courts web site, at http://www.courts.ca.gov/policyadmin-invitationstocomment.htm.
     
    If you have any questions, please contact Camilla Kieliger, at camilla.kieliger@jud.ca.gov, or at 415-865-7681.

  • 12 Apr 2016 6:22 PM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    The United States District Court for the Central District of California announces the appointment of Steve Kim as a United States Magistrate Judge. Judge Kim, who was sworn in on April 11, 2016, will sit in Los Angeles in the Court’s Western Division. He succeeds retired Magistrate Judge Carla M. Woehrle.

    Before his appointment as a Magistrate Judge, Judge Kim was the Regional Managing Director at Stroz Friedberg, LLC, in charge of the firm’s three West Coast offices. Specializing in law and technology, Judge Kim counseled law firms, government agencies, and corporations on cybersecurity, data privacy, digital forensics and electronic discovery. He led and managed hundreds of matters involving trade secret litigation, internal corporate or forensics investigations, government subpoenas and search warrants, and data breach responses and notifications. Judge Kim advised lawyers, executives and corporate boards on information governance, digital risk assessments, incident response, and cybersecurity compliance.

    Prior to working at Stroz Friedberg, LLC, Judge Kim served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division of the Los Angeles U.S. Attorney’s Office. He prosecuted cases involving violent and white-collar crimes, immigration offenses, and drug trafficking charges. He also investigated and charged defendants for computer crimes, identity theft, and intellectual property violations. Judge Kim authored numerous appellate briefs filed in the Ninth Circuit and successfully argued several cases in oral argument. Before his work as a federal prosecutor, Judge Kim was a civil litigator handling complex litigation and appeals at Munger, Tolles & Olson, LLP.

    Judge Kim received his Bachelor of Arts in Letters, with Special Distinction, from the University of Oklahoma, where he was the recipient of the Carl Albert Award for the Most Distinguished Graduate in the College of Arts & Sciences. He graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center, where he was elected to the Order of the Coif and served on the law review. After law school, Judge Kim clerked for Judge Sidney R. Thomas of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and District Judge Stephen V. Wilson of the Central District of California.

    Including the position now occupied by Judge Kim, the Central District of California has 24 authorized full-time Magistrate Judges and one part-time position. The Central District of California is comprised of the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo. It serves approximately 19.6 million people – nearly half the population of the State of California.

    KIRY K. GRAY
    CLERK OF COURT
  • 31 Mar 2016 9:28 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    Organization Description
    The Public Law Center (PLC), Orange County's pro bono law firm, is committed to providing access to justice for low-income residents. Through volunteers and staff, PLC provides free civil legal services, including counseling, individual representation, community education, and strategic litigation and advocacy to challenge societal injustices. Now in its 35th year of service, PLC works with more than 1,600 volunteer lawyers, paralegals and law students from throughout the county who volunteer their time and expertise.

    Qualifications

    • Admission to the California State Bar
    • Bilingual English/Spanish fluency
    • Knowledge of health law, public benefits, and probate a strong plus
    • Experience working with people living with HIV/AIDS a strong plus
    • Ability to present legal concepts to audiences of varying sophistication, such as clients or attorney volunteers
    • Excellent public speaking skills
    • Commitment to working with volunteer lawyers and law students
    • Ability to work effectively as part of a team
    • Must have own transportation, valid CA Driver’s license, insurance and good driving record

    Duties and Responsibilities

    • Provide quality legal services to low-income residents of Orange County in collaboration with an established team of attorneys
    • Organize and staff clinics at health care facilities in various locations in Orange County
    • Coordinate and supervise volunteer attorneys and law students at clinics
    • Oversee case referrals and provide support to pro bono attorneys
    • Handle a case load of health law and probate matters
    • Conduct community education presentations to clients, partner agencies, and service providers
    • Represent PLC at legal networking and community outreach events
    • Occasional evening and weekend work required
    • Other duties as assigned

    Salary & Benefits

    • Salary dependent on experience
    • Full range of excellent benefits provided, including health, dental, vision, life and 403(b)
    • Generous holiday, vacation and flex plan policy allowing for periodic 3 day weekends
    • State and local Bar dues paid

    Please submit resume, cover letter and writing sample (10 pages or less) to
    glanda@publiclawcenter.org. Please no phone calls.
    APPLICATION DEADLINE: Open until filled

  • 31 Mar 2016 9:24 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    Organization Description
    The Public Law Center (PLC), Orange County's non-profit pro bono law firm, is
    committed to providing access to justice for low-income residents. Through
    volunteers and staff, PLC provides free civil legal services, including counseling,
    individual representation, community education, and strategic litigation and advocacy to challenge societal injustices. Now in its 34th year of service, PLC works with more than 1,600 volunteer lawyers, paralegals and law students from throughout the county who volunteer their time and expertise.

    The Immigration Unit provides assistance in the following areas: U visa, T visa,
    asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, DACA, naturalization, and some
    deportation defense. The staff attorney would be expected to provide assistance in these areas through direct representation and providing technical assistance to our pro bono volunteers.

    Qualifications

    • Active membership in the California State Bar
    • Bilingual English/Spanish preferred
    • 1-3 years demonstrated experience in immigration law, including case preparation, legal research, and client representation before USCIS and EOIR
    • Demonstrated commitment to working with immigrant communities
    • Excellent oral/written communication skills
    • Strong public speaking skills and ability to train a variety of audiences, from clients to pro bono attorneys
    • Ability to manage multiple tasks and work independently
    • Must have own transportation, valid CA Driver’s license, insurance and good driving record

    Duties and Responsibilities

    • Provide direct legal services to low income clients in the areas of: SIJS petitions, asylum applications, U visa, T visa, DACA, and naturalization
    • Help organize and coordinate immigration legal services through clinics and workshops throughout Orange County
    • Provide training to pro bono attorneys and volunteers as needed
    • Represent PLC at legal networking and community outreach events
    • Full time position; occasional evening and weekend work required
    • Other duties as assigned

    Salary & Benefits

    • Salary dependent on experience
    • Full range of excellent benefits provided, including health, dental, vision, life and 403(b)
    • Generous holiday, vacation and flex plan policy allowing for periodic 3-day weekends
    • State and local Bar dues paid
    Please submit resume, cover letter and writing sample (10 pages or less) to
    glanda@publiclawcenter.org. Please no phone calls.
    APPLICATION DEADLINE: Open until filled
  • 30 Mar 2016 11:12 AM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law’s Diversity Initiative Symposium and Publication hosted its inaugural symposium, Blinded Justice: A Discussion About Whether the Legal System Values and Protects Diverse Communities, on March 3, 2016. The symposium invited both legal practitioners and social activists for a candid discussion about unequal justice in diverse communities.

    Panel I: Inequalities: The Immigration and Asylum Process

    CJ3A1984_blog

    Panelists discuss the immigration and asylum process

    Asylum law is stacked against the poorest and most vulnerable of asylum seekers, panelists asserted in the first panel moderated by Orange County Hispanic Bar Association Chief Financial Officer Darrell P. White and Orange County Hispanic Bar Association Board Member Sasha Tymkowicz.

    Munmeeth Soni, an immigration advocate with the Public Law Center, opened the discussion with an overview of immigration procedures and the statutory grounds under which an applicant may qualify for asylum. Those seeking asylum after being threatened, beaten, raped or tortured often are unable to articulate their experience in a way that will satisfy current U.S. asylum statues, she noted.

    Gary Silbiger, a member of the National Lawyers Guild Los Angeles Chapter’s Immigration Court Watch, said he has also documented numerous procedural abuses while observing in immigration court. He noted a failure of judges to provide the legal guidance to pro per applicants that the judges are supposed to provide. Shockingly, panelists explained, procedural shortcomings are so rampant in immigration court that having an attorney may not help. They spoke of the “rocket dockets” – courts noted for their speedy disposition of cases – that push asylum seekers, particularly undocumented children, through the court process without sufficient time to prepare their case. Likewise, attorneys may not have any chance to speak privately with their clients who appear in court from a distant location via video conference.

    Fatima Dadabhoy, with the Council on American-Islamic Relations, discussed procedural abuses of those politically disfavored, particularly Muslim immigrants. She noted that she represents clients whose asylum and immigration applications have been delayed by years after the FBI demanded information that her clients did not have.

    CJ3A1994_blog

    Panelist Jorge Guitierrez speaks as part of the 2016 Social Justice Symposium

    Jorge Guitierrez, founder of Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement, pointed to the systemic abuses faced by gay men and transgender women, politically disfavored populations with high deportation rates.

    Panelists proposed a variety of solutions. At the top of their list was creative lawyering; panelists said they spend significant time conducting client interviews to find some way to connect their client’s abuse to a statutory ground for asylum. Their second suggestion was to incorporate into asylum law domestic violence protections for women and children subjected to abuse in home countries that not only fail to prosecute abusers but in fact tacitly approve of the violence. And finally, panelists encouraged others to get involved as volunteer attorneys to assist with asylum claims and representation for activists arrested at protests outside federal immigration facilities and private detention centers.

    View the webcast.

    Panel II: Inequities: The School to Prison Pipeline

    James Bell, founder and director of the W. Haywood Burns Institute, and Stacey Lamont, who handles school expulsion defense cases at Moore Law For Children, addressed systemic causes of the school to prison pipeline and its impact on local youth.

    CJ3A2028_blog

    Panelists Stacey Lamont and James Bell discuss the school to prison pipeline

    At the heart of the crisis, Bell identified zero tolerance policies and the outsourcing of student discipline from schools to law enforcement. Zero tolerance policies criminalize the developmentally normal behavior problems of children. When school officials stop taking corrective measures within the school and instead rely on suspension or calling the police – whose tool bag is limited to warnings and arrest – the perfect storm is created that ensures large numbers of young people will have academic gaps and a criminal record. According to Lamont, whether a student receives a suspension, expulsion, or arrest, there is a ripple effect on the child’s future.

    The solutions Bell and Lamont recommended began with eliminating zero tolerance policies. Schools must reclaim responsibility for student discipline. The discipline employed must reflect an understanding of normal juvenile brain development and the goal of keeping children in school. At the same time, schools must increase academic standards and faculty diversity. If children are going to work for success in school, they must be challenged, engaged, and kept in school.

    View the webcast.

    Panel III: Impunity: The Failure of the Criminal and Civil Justice System to Respond to Violence Against Diverse Communities

    CJ3A2067_blog

    Panelists Margaret Prescod and Nana Gyamfi

    The final panel of the evening got to the heart of the symposium question, whether the justice system values and protects diverse communities. The overwhelming response from the panel: No. Margaret Prescod, founder of the Black Coalition Fighting Back Serial Murders and host of the nationally syndicated Sojourner Truth radio show, put the question in context. She discussed the roots of policing in America which stem from the early slave patrols and developed from there as a means of social control.

    How does this system of social control relate to those listening today, particularly white listeners? Prescod spoke of social control being hierarchical, a pyramid in which those lacking equality of treatment were pacified by having their superiority to those lower in status made clear. Today, just as in the past, superiority is an illusion paid for with our own oppression. Her powerful and moving example was the extent of current media coverage for a white journalist that was videotaped nude, while little attention is being paid to the trial of a man who murdered numerous poor, black women in South Los Angeles. And how is the justice system implicated in this? The official police reports for the murders of those women in South Los Angeles list the crime as “NHI,” a police acronym for “No Human Involved.”

    Attorneys Nana Gyamfi and John Burris spoke of their work to hold police accountable for misconduct. Burris, who has been litigating high profile civil rights cases for more than 40 years, spoke of the revolution that video footage has had in these cases. Twenty years ago, when he was representing Rodney King – the first high profile police beating that was videotaped – the video had little impact. Today, video footage can make all the difference.

    Chapman University Fowler School of Law Professor Bobby Dexter moderates the final panel

    Chapman University Fowler School of Law Professor Bobby Dexter moderates the final panel

    Gyamfi was quick to point out that video recordings, particularly those from police dash cams and body cameras, are not a cure-all and in fact cause problems because rules are not clear on their usage. She discussed instances where prosecutors have denied having footage against one defendant, the relevant footage being used by the prosecutor in another related case. Her most troubling issue is with the selective use of the cameras. In one case the police turned the cameras on and off repeatedly throughout the course of their interaction with her client. The judge had no issue with the gaps in the footage the prosecutor seeks to use. Burris advises that the solution is to move forward with video usage and let rules be established through impact decisions.

    View the webcast.

    Keynote Presentation by Hamid Khan

    CJ3A2182_blog

    2016 Social Justice Symposium Keynote Speaker Hamid Khan

    Hamid Khan, activist and community organizer who has advocated for the empowerment of marginalized communities across Southern California for decades, delivered the keynote address at the 2016 Social Justice Symposium at Fowler School of Law.

    Khan began his discussion on the impact of modern policing with this supposition that police exist to protect and serve. But, he posed the question of whose interests are served. To arrive at the answer, and to see the systemic flaws in policing, Khan asked attendees to consider the structures of modern policing. Specifically, what informs those structures, how they are guided, how policies are created, who is involved in crafting those policies, and how those policies are financed and enforced.

    Khan began an examination of modern policing with a quote from Edward Banfield, who wrote, “The implication that lower-class culture is pathological seems fully warranted. Rather than waste time and public money implementing policies based on the false notion that all men were created equal, better to just face facts and acknowledge the natural divisions that exist. . . . And the police should feel free to crack down on young lower-class men.”

    The application of this “scientific” justification for state violence was guided by “the five faces of the ‘other’” that our society already had: the savage native face, the criminal black face, the manipulative Asian face, the illegal Latino face and the terrorist Muslim face. Khan pointed out that the list of ‘others’ is far more expansive and includes those who threaten the property-focused justice system. He shared a memo issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security in which officers were advised to open suspicious activity reports against anyone organizing against gentrification. The memo described opponents of gentrification as “anarchist extremists.”

    Increasingly the craftsmen of these policing policies are police officers and the architects of federal counter-intelligence/counter-insurgency policy. Khan noted the growing presence of police officers on the Los Angeles City Board, a city that leads the nation in killings by police.

    The cities are receiving federal financing for anti-terrorist policing, yet the policing disproportionately targets the black community and those who advocate for social change, he said. Khan noted that more than 30 percent of suspicious activity reports, a focus of the federally funded “anti-terrorism” program, were opened against black people. In addition to the surveillance, local police departments are the beneficiaries of tremendous amounts of military grade weaponry. The deployment of armed drones and militarized “Robocops” against the “other,” he said, belie any thought that the police are there to protect and serve marginalized communities.

    Khan urged attendees to consider the information they heard during the symposium as a call to action. He reminded guests that there is opportunity for collective learning and engagement, and advised everyone to get involved in some way, such as providing legal research, pro bono representation or committing to attend further education and action events. The onus is on each one of us to shed the shackle of passivity that a control centered system has placed on us, he said.

    View the keynote presentation webcast.


  • 25 Mar 2016 12:24 PM | Amelia Montgomery (Administrator)

    Comments sought:
     
    Four (4) new proposals to amend the California Rules of Court and Judicial Council forms have been posted to the California Courts web site, at http://www.courts.ca.gov/policyadmin-invitationstocomment.htm.
     
    The proposals are:
    SP16-02: Traffic and Criminal Procedure: Infraction Procedures Regarding Bail, Fines, and Assessments
    SP16-03: Traffic: Installment Payment of Bail Forfeiture and Traffic Violator School Fees
    SP16-04: Traffic: Online Installment Payment of Bail Forfeiture and Traffic Violator School Fees
    The deadline for these three proposals is 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, April 20, 2016.
     
    SP16-05: Judicial Administration: Judicial Branch Contracting Manual
    The deadline for this proposal is 5:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 5, 2016.
     
    You are welcome to distribute this email to any other interested parties. If you have any questions, please contact Camilla Kieliger, at camilla.kieliger@jud.ca.gov, or at 415-865-7681.

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