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Arnold & Porter Receives ABA 2011 Death Penalty Project Award

September 14, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC, September 14, 2011 - Arnold & Porter LLP is being awarded with a 2011 Exceptional Service Award from the American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project at its 25th Anniversary and Volunteer Recognition Event today. The event, which is being held at the Decatur House in Washington, DC, honors retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, with special guest Anthony Graves, a Texas death row exonoree. Arnold & Porter is one of three law firms being honored this year.

"We are deeply honored to be recognized by the ABA for our representation of those facing death sentences," said Phil Horton, head of Arnold & Porter's Pro Bono Committee. "Our long-standing commitment to pro bono capital work dates to the late 1970s when the death penalty was re-instated in several states. Since then we have worked to assist those who otherwise may have no recourse, through direct representation of individuals and filing amicus briefs. We are proud to be among this select group of honorees and congratulate our peers on their outstanding contributions."

"The scope and breadth of Arnold & Porter's commitment to death-sentenced prisoners is truly extraordinary," said Robin M. Maher, Director of the ABA Death Penalty Representation Project. "The firm has provided life-saving assistance to a number of prisoners, which is admirable enough. But what distinguishes the firm is its unapologetic attitude that competent legal representation should be available to everyone, no matter how controversial the defendant or case. The firm's pro bono work is an expression of that belief, and it is one important reason the ABA is pleased to recognize the firm with one of its 2011 Exceptional Service Awards."

For the past three decades, in what sometimes have been high-profile cases, Arnold & Porter has represented numerous inmates on death row and submitted several amicus briefs, committing substantial resources to the support of its capital pro bono efforts. Some of Arnold & Porter's recent work on death penalty cases includes the representation of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person brought to trial in connection with the September 11 attacks; James Dennis, convicted in 1992 of murder and sentenced to death in Pennsylvania, a case which is pending in federal court; and Henry Daniels in connection with his state post-conviction proceedings in Pennsylvania, a case in which his death penalty was overturned last month.

Arnold & Porter has a comprehensive and highly regarded pro bono program. While many law firms have upgraded their pro bono programs in recent years, Arnold & Porter has shown a sustained level of commitment that few can match. The firm focuses on a variety of "impact" cases, as well as representing disadvantaged individuals, such as families facing eviction, victims of domestic violence, and people who have been wrongfully denied government benefits. The firm's pro bono program covers the full range of legal practices, including transactional work and counseling for non-profits and non-governmental organization, as well as litigation.

Each year the American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project honors the work of its volunteer death penalty lawyers at the ABA's Anniversary & Volunteer Recognition Event. The mission of the American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project is to address the crisis of counsel in the death penalty system. As one of its primary goals, the Project seeks to expand the pool of lawyers willing to serve as pro bono counsel for death row inmates in post conviction proceedings by recruiting volunteer attorneys to handle capital cases and providing them with training and assistance. The Project also educates the public and bar about the crisis of counsel and works toward reform of the systems that provide counsel to indigent defendants through its systemic litigation project

Arnold & Porter LLP is an international law firm of more than 700 lawyers with offices in Brussels, Denver, London, Los Angeles, New York, Northern Virginia, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, and Washington, DC. The firm, founded in 1946, maintains more than 25 practice areas spanning a broad spectrum of the law, with a primary focus on litigation, transactional matters, and regulatory issues.

 

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