My own view of criminal defense lawyering owes much to Monroe Freedman. I agree with his "traditionalist view”, of criminal defense ethics as a lawyering paradigm in which zealous advocacy and the maintenance of client confidence and trust are paramount. Simply put, zeal and confidentiality trump most other rules, principles, or values. When there is tension between these "fundamental principles” and other ethical rules, criminal defense lawyers must uphold the principles, even in the face of public or professional outcry. Although a defender must act within the bounds of the law, he or she should engage in advocacy that is as close to the line as possible, and, indeed, should test the line, if it is in the client's interest in doing so.
11 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol'y 83-140 (2003)
Scholarly Commons Citation
Smith, Abbe, "The Difference in Criminal Defense and the Difference It Makes" (2003). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. Paper 215.