United States v. Brown

In the mid-’90s, state and federal authorities worked together to convict the defendant of arson and murder in a state-level prosecution. Decades later, the defendant learned that the prosecution failed to disclose payoffs made to government witnesses, and he succeeded in overturning his convictions. Now, the federal prosecutors want to retry him in federal court. In United States v. Brown, the Third Circuit paved the way for that prosecution by ruling that the double jeopardy clause does not prohibit a new trial. The Third Circuit based its opinion on the “trial error” exception to double jeopardy. The Third Circuit found that exception applied because the defendant’s “trial proceeded to a jury and culminated in a conviction that was vacated on collateral review.”

Brown