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Shan Wu offers insight to national news outlets on hate crime prosecution - Shanlon Wu

Shan Wu offers insight to national news outlets on hate crime prosecution

By Hate Crime
[Warning: this article discusses racial and sexual violence against Asian-Americans, including both historical instances of violence and the recent Atlanta shootings which occurred ]   As a former federal prosecutor and a frequent political commentator on racial justice in the law, Shan Wu has been contacted by a number of news agencies in the past several weeks to comment on the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes in the United States since the beginning of the pandemic. Read on for a summary of what Shan has to say, and links to all of his most recent appearances. Hate Crimes The federal standards for a hate crime are simply that the crime was motivated by prejudice against race, gender, sexual orientation, or another protected status. Most states have their own hate crime statutes with similar language. Amidst the recent rise in violence against Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders, many activists have called for...
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Anti-Asian Hate crimes - Shanlon Wu

Anti-Asian Hate crimes

By Racism in the Law
Prosecutors need to charge anti-Asian violence as hate crimes. While any violent crime impacts the victim, a crime motivated by hate can impact entire groups of people, be they of a particular race, religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. To effectively deter future bigots from acting on their worst impulses, the criminal justice system must not only prosecute the violent acts, but also the hateful intent behind them. The need to adopt this approach could not be more urgent. In the wake of COVID-19, there has been an enormous upsurge of some 1,900% increase in hate crime incidents driven by anti-Asian sentiment. Additionally, almost 3,000 incidents of anti-Asian discrimination were reported to the Stop AAPI Hate database. The recent murder of Vichar Ratanapakdee, an 84-year-old Thai immigrant who was slammed to the ground by a 19-year-old, has reminded us of the crucial need to charge these crimes with the acknowledgement of...
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The Presidential Election Fraud and the Supreme Court - Shanlon Wu

The Presidential Election, “Fraud,” and the Supreme Court: Everything You Need to Know

By Trump
Attorney and CNN Legal Analyst Shan Wu is often invited on to CNN to offer his take on contemporary politics. As a former federal prosecutor and current defense attorney at DC Student Defense, Shan provides legal analysis on a variety of topics. On November 28 — almost a month after the 2020 Presidential Election and Justice Amy Coney Barrett joined the Supreme Court — Shan was asked to discuss some of these judicial goings-on. You can watch the whole CNN clip on YouTube here.  A federal judge in Pennsylvania seemed frustrated by Trump’s lack of allegations and evidence. What does this mean? Shan responded that Judge Matthew Brann of the US District Court in the Middle District of Pennsylvania was just the latest in a series of judges who are fed up with the Trump team's weak legal arguments.  As he has said on CNN before, Shan reiterated that it...
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Implicit Racism in the Law - shanlon wu

Implicit Racism in the Law

By Racism in the Law
Trigger warning: This article discusses sensitive topics including lynching, police brutality, concentration camps, etc. It also uses images regarding these topics that some people may find disturbing. In the United States, it seems that many Americans are under the impression we’ve moved past the old days of explicit racist acts, laws, and beliefs. In American society, it seems that many people are under the impression we’ve moved past the old days of explicit racist acts, laws, and beliefs. The whitewashing of American history sometimes causes such historical amnesia - but the rememberance of racist crimes such as slavery, the forced relocation of indigenous peoples, and the Chinese Exclusion Acts act as legacies of the implicitly prejudiced and racist foundations our country was built upon.  Some people believe that since we’ve moved on from slavery, the forced relocation of indigenous peoples, and clearly discriminatory laws like the Chinese Exclusion Act, that...
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Bill Cosby sentence and the #MeToo movement - Shanlon Wu

Bill Cosby sentence and the #MeToo movement

By Sexual Assault
Bill Cosby is in prison after yet another highly publicized, epic fall from grace amid the #MeToo movement. Once referred to as “America’s Dad,” the comedian and actor has moved from a lavish home to a 7x13 jail cell in Pennsylvania after a judge sentenced him to three to 10 years in prison for drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand more than a decade ago. It took two juries to convict Bill Cosby. His first trial in June 2017 ended with a hung jury, but it took a second jury just two days to convict him in his April 28, 2018, retrial. How did the case of Bill Cosby go from a deadlocked jury to a sex crimes conviction? And will Cosby stay in prison, or will his lawyers win on appeal? Shan Wu, a former sex crimes prosecutor based in Washington, D.C., believes the reasoning behind Cosby’s conviction is...
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President Trump’s executive order to stop separating families at the border is a farce - Shanlon Wu

Trump’s executive order to stop separating families at the border is a farce

By Trump
President Donald Trump is on a crusade to imprison immigrants as they cross our borders. And what’s worse: he’s billing his “zero tolerance” immigration policy -- pitting asylum-seekers as criminals -- as a humane solution. In an op-ed published on CNN’s website, Shan Wu, a former federal prosecutor who also served as counsel to Attorney General Janet Reno, explains that Trump’s new immigration policy is an effort to deter immigrants from coming to the United States by locking up as many of them as possible. How is his administration doing this legally? Investigators tried simply attaching “illegal entry” to immigrants’ rap sheets, automatically converting their civil asylum request into a criminal proceeding. It’s important to note that seeking asylum in the United States is not a crime. Once these immigrants were deemed criminals, they detained the asylum seekers and separated thousands of children from their families. This continued for weeks,...
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manafort trial recap - Shanlon Wu

The Manafort Trial: Recap

By CNN
If you followed the high-profile trial of Paul Manafort and the guilty plea of Rick Gates closely, you might have watched DC Defense attorney Shanlon Wu analyzing the cases on CNN or noticed his name appearing in news articles that mention Manafort and Gates.  Gates was a longtime deputy to Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman who was convicted on August 21 of five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud and one count of failure to report foreign bank accounts. He was convicted on eight of the 18 charges he was facing. Gates pleaded guilty in February to similar charges in a deal that forced him to take the stand and testify against Manafort. Wu, a former federal prosecutor who served as counsel to Attorney General Janet Reno, was one of Gates’ defense attorneys until he withdrew from the case in February 2018. The criminal charges...
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Partisan meetings, Plea Agreements, and Spies: today’s CNN commentary

By Uncategorized
As the Trump brokered meeting between GOP lawmakers and the Justice Department erodes bipartisanship in our government by excluding Democrats, the President continues to undermine the IG's investigation with new allegations that there was a spy in his campaign. What does this all mean for the Russia Probe? Meanwhile, Michael Cohen's partner gets an extremely favorable plea agreement. Will that influence a flip? Watch this discussion + hear my thoughts from today's CNN appearance below:
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Is the Cosby Verdict a Game Changer in Sexual Assault Cases_ Shanlon Wu

Is the Cosby Verdict a Game Changer in Sexual Assault Cases?

By Sexual Assault
What does Bill Cosby’s recent conviction mean for the current status of sexual assault cases in criminal cases, campus cases and the #MeToo movement? Cosby was first tried on the identical charges in June of 2017. That case resulted in the judge declaring a mistrial after the jury deadlocked, unable to reach a verdict for six days. But at the retrial in April of this year, the jury took only two days to return a guilty verdict. What changed? Everything. Let’s examine the legal changes and the changes in the world since the first trial. The Legal View Legally, the case was a completely different case the second time around.  In the first trial, the judge allowed only a single witness, besides the complainant, to testify as to an alleged similar assault that Cosby had supposedly done.  Although there were up to 19 potential women who could have offered such...
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Abacus_ “Small Enough to Jail” shanlon wu dc student defense defending college students

Abacus: “Small Enough to Jail”

By Uncategorized
The film Abacus: Small Enough to Jail disturbed me in a number of ways.  As a Chinese American, it pained me to see immigrants like my own parents being prosecuted unfairly.  And as a former prosecutor turned defense counsel, it reminded me of the inequities inherent in our criminal justice system. Nominated for an Oscar in the category of Best Documentary Feature, Abacus tells the story of the five-year battle fought by the Chinese American Sung family against the prosecution of their family owned bank in Chinatown, New York City.  In the aftermath of the financial crisis caused by mortgage defaults in 2008, this small family-owned community bank became the only bank in the United States which was criminally charged.   That’s right.  The only one.   The giant corporate banks that had cost Fannie Mae and taxpayers trillions of dollars in losses were not prosecuted.  But this one small...
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