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Criminal Law Keyed to Gershowitz
Mathews v. United States
Citation:485 U.S. 58, 108 S.Ct. 883, 99 L.Ed.2d 54.
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
The defendant was employed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and was responsible for the SBA’s “8A Program,” which provided aid to certain small businesses. Under the program, the SBA obtained government contracts and subcontracted them to program participants. The SBA would then assist the participants in performing the contracts.
In October 1984, James DeShazer, one of the program’s participants, complained to a Government customer that defendant had repeatedly asked for loans. DeShazer believed that defendant was not providing him with certain 8A Program benefits because DeShazer had not made the requested loans. In early 1985, the FBI arranged for DeShazer to assist in the investigation resulting from his complaint. Under FBI surveillance, DeShazer offered defendant a loan that, according to DeShazer, defendant had previously requested. The defendant agreed to accept the loan, and two months later, DeShazer met defendant at a restaurant and gave him the money. The defendant was immediately arrested and charged with accepting a gratuity in exchange for an official act.
Before trial, the defendant sought to raise an entrapment defense. The District Court denied his request, ruling that entrapment was not available to the defendant because he would not admit all of the elements of the offense charged. While the defendant admitted to accepting the loan, he claimed that he did not do so with guilty intent, but rather believed it was a personal loan unrelated to his duties at the SBA. The defendant was convicted and the Court of Appeals affirmed.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.