Brief of Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL) and National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyer (NACDL) as Amici Curiae in Support of Appellant and Intervenor.
Argument: Conviction of innocent persons cannot be tolerated. A prosecutor should be able to exercise her statutory and ethical duty to assist in overturning wrongful convictions. Missouri’s state habeas corpus rule is inadequate to provide a remedy to innocent persons who are wrongfully convicted because it requires the innocent person, who may be without counsel, to file and litigate his petition in the county where he is in custody rather than the county of conviction. Missouri Court Rules 29.11 (motion for new trial) and 29.12 (plain error) should be construed to allow a prosecutor to file a motion in the trial court to correct a wrongful conviction.
Brief of the Southern Poverty Law Center, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the Human Rights Defense Center as Amici Curiae in Support of Petitioner.
Argument: Congress enacted the PLRA against the background of this country's tradition of access to the courts and the opportunity for judicial redress. The fee-collection provision of the PLRA reflects a careful balance. The "Per Case" approach threatens to deter meritorious lawsuits.