Law Offices:
News & announcements for the week of
January 15, 2001

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Welcome to the Law Offices' In-House Clinic Program at Chicago-Kent College of Law.  This semester you will learn how to practice law under the close supervision of a faculty attorney - an experience that is available only in the Law School's in-house clinical programs.

The first meeting will be on Wednesday, January 17, 2001, from 3:00 p.m. to 3:55 p.m. in Room 510. Attendance at this meeting is mandatory for all beginning students in the In-House Law Offices programs.  At the meeting, we will distribute the Clinic Handbook.

Continuing students should contact their supervising attorney and pick up a Handbook from the Receptionist in Room 600 on the morning of January 17.

You will be notified as to when and where you will meet with your attorneys.  The rooms will also be announced during the 3:00 p.m. meeting and on the 6th floor bulletin board.  

For Criminal Clinic students, please obtain a MCC form from the receptionist, complete it, and return it to her if you have not already done so.  The form needs to be completed before the spring session begins.  

We are looking forward to working with all of you during the spring semester.


This two-credit course (no paper) will focus on the elements, defenses, sentencing  trends and emerging legal issues associated with the major federal tax crimes,  including the grandaddy of them all, attempted tax evasion. We will discuss IRS and Department of Justice investigative authority, techniques, and prosecution policies, as well as the government’s substantial forfeiture power. Other topics will include the interplay with civil tax penalties, an overview of applicable federal sentencing guidelines, trial tactics, and select ethical issues.  Special attention will be devoted to analyzing the evidentiary proof necessary to sustain the substantive crimes, and particular strategies that might effectively weaken or even terminate a pending administrative investigation.  The class will be taught by Professor Jonathan Decatorsmith, a former senior trial attorney with the IRS and tax fraud specialist, and currently the Supervisor of the Tax Litigation Clinic.   Though not required, it is recommended that students have completed Tax Procedure, Evidence, and one Criminal Procedure class. 


Chicago-Kent College of Law’s Information Technology & Entrepreneurship Clinic (ITEC) fills two needs in the Chicagoland technology community. First, ITEC provides competent technology law services to small technology firms and local start-ups, at affordable rates through its unique fee generating model (hyperlink).  ITEC attorneys and students help these companies stay abreast of the rapidly evolving legal issues relevant to the technology entrepreneur. 

Second, and most importantly, ITEC provides Chicago-Kent law students with practical, hands-on experience working on cutting-edge legal issues, under the supervision of experienced technology attorneys.  These students will then travel into the Chicago legal market upon graduation, providing Chicago with technologically savvy lawyers to meet its developing technology law needs.

ITEC assists new ventures through the each stage of developing a start-up -- business organization; protection of intellectual property rights; transactional and contract drafting; and, current advice regarding evolving legal issues relevant to doing business on the Internet.  Students who intern in ITEC will assist in providing legal services to established IT companies and Internet start-ups.


First Defense Legal Aid (FDLA), the only program of its kind in the country, fills the gap in Illinois’ public defender system by providing 24-hour free legal representation to adults and children in police custody or under police investigation.  FDLA provides a unique “frontline” criminal defense experience for students, enabling them to see: how evidence is collected and created; the tactics of the Chicago Police Department when trying to extract a confession or question witnesses; the role that the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Felony Review Team plays during the beginning stages of a criminal investigation; and the utter vulnerability of children and adults when under intensive and sometimes abusive interrogation.  In addition to this stationhouse representation, DSLA also works toward the permanent improvement of our criminal justice system by educating the public, organizing community residents to combat police misconduct, by engaging in legislative and community advocacy, investigating patterns of misconduct by the Chicago Police, taking select criminal defense cases to trial, and initiating 42 U.S.C. §1983 litigation to improve the policies and procedures of the Chicago Police as they relate to the treatment of persons in police custody.

Students participating in the FDLA class must be eligible for a Illinois Supreme Court Rule 711 license.  Students representing FDLA clients at Chicago Police Stations will gain unique insight into the criminal justice system at its earliest stage and be able to:

1. View and Document Line-Ups, DNA testing, and Halt Lie Detector Tests.
2. Assert a Client’s 5th Amendment Right to Remain Silent and 6th Amendment Right to Counsel.
3. Gather Information from the Police on the Progress of the Investigation.
4. Document Police Brutality and other Misconduct.
5. Counsel Clients and Provide Information to their Families.
6. Interview Witnesses.
7. Demand a Client’s Immediate Release at the Police Station and in Court.


The Law Offices of Chicago-Kent offers nine long-standing programs in live-client clinical legal education which accommodate over 150 students in the fall and spring semesters and over 50 students in the summer semester. 

For a complete description of all clinical programs, please visit the Law Offices Home Page at
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