Skirting The Constitutional Question In Criminal Fines

Law360, New York (April 17, 2012, 12:44 PM EDT) -- In Southern Union Co. v. United States, No. 11-94, the U.S. Supreme Court once again heard arguments regarding the relationship between the elements of a criminal offense, which must, of course, be proven beyond a reasonable doubt to the satisfaction of an impartial jury, and the characteristics of the offender and his offense, which a judge may determine by a preponderance of the evidence, and which are then central to determining the offender’s punishment.

At least since Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466 (2000), the...
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