the Zealous

12 Oct 22

It's good to be reminded of how fortunate we are to be practicing law in a society that upholds the rule of law.

On 29 January 2017, U Ko Ni was shot dead as he waited for a taxi outside Yangon International Airport in Myanmar. A prominent constitutional lawyer, acclaimed reformer and senior legal adviser to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (‘NLD’), he was working on creative legal strategies to circumvent the constitutionally-enshrined political power still held by the Myanmar military. The murder of such a skilled legal activist who was deeply immersed in using legal strategies to embed the rule of law speaks directly to the dangers of lawyering in ‘hybrid’ regimes, those countries in which elements of authoritarianism and democracy commingle.

04 Oct 22

As deal lawyers, it’s our job to anticipate disputes. If a dispute does arise, the competence of both sides’ lawyers is immediately put to the test, in the form of a glaring spotlight on the choice of law and forum clause. Is the dispute captured cleanly, or ambiguously? Being forced to spend legal fees on the peripheral question of applicable law and forum is a recipe for massive client frustration.

30 Sep 22

At this time 27 years ago, OJ Simpson was acquitted in Los Angeles Superior Court of the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. The jury deliberated for less than four hours. The government's case was doomed primarily by a single government witness, Mark Furhman.

Simpson’s group of defense lawyers, which would come to be known as the “dream team,” included F. Lee Bailey (shown in photo). Bailey conducted the cross-examination of Furhman, a detective with the LAPD. It was Furhman who discovered a right-handed blood-covered glove at Simpson’s residence that matched a bloody glove found at the scene of the double-homicide. The blood from both gloves was identical, and DNA evidence from the left glove revealed a mix of Simpson’s blood and that of the two victims.

The theory of the defense was that Mark Fuhrman was a racist and had planted the glove at Simpson's residence in order to frame Simpson, or at least, to pump up the case against him. The actions and testimony of Furhman were more than enough to implant reasonable doubt in the minds of the jury members.