News Release

Diverse Coalition Releases ‘Criminal Law Checklist for Federal Legislators' at Capitol Hill Briefing

WASHINGTON, DC (March 24, 2011) – As part of an ongoing, multi-front effort to rein in the burgeoning problem of overcriminalization, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), joined by the Heritage Foundation and the Texas Public Policy Foundation, today held a briefing on Capitol Hill for media and congressional staffers focused on overcriminalization in the Dodd-Frank Act. At that briefing, the groups released a Criminal Law Checklist for Federal Legislators. This checklist, which was jointly prepared and issued by these three organizations and the Washington Legal Foundation, provides common sense guidance for legislators considering the introduction or passage of any criminal law on the federal level.

“This checklist is another tool to rein in the twin problems of overcriminalization and the overfederalization of criminal law. NACDL is providing it to lawmakers as part of an ongoing effort in concert with like-minded organizations from across the political spectrum,” explained Shana-Tara Regon, director of white collar crime policy at NACDL. “There are already the approximately 4,500 federal crimes in the code and tens of thousands in the regulations. The checklist presents precisely the questions that justice, fairness and common sense dictate must be fairly answered before Congress adds to them.”

The Criminal Law Checklist for Federal Legislators is available on NACDL’s web site here.

Featured Products


NACDL Communications Department

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal legal system.