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APPELLATE LITIGATION &

CRIMINAL DEFENSE

A boutique law firm focusing primarily on appellate litigation (civil and criminal), sentencing mitigation, post-conviction relief, First Step Act relief, and clemency. 

We possess an unparalleled combination of

lived experience and professional expertise, with a proven track record of achieving

pathmarking, life-changing results.

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LIVED EXPERIENCE

Our team has an intimate understanding of the criminal justice system, both at the state and federal levels. Shon Hopwood, for example, spent 11 years in federal prison before earning a Gates Scholarship and becoming a law professor at Georgetown University, a journey profiled by the New York Times, Washington Post60 Minutes, and NPRamong many others. 

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LEGAL EXPERTISE

We bring to the table unique professional experience, having worked at the Supreme Court of the United States, for federal appeals court judges, and at the U.S. Sentencing Commission; testified and presented before Congress, the Commission, and federal judges; served as tenured and tenure-track law professors; presented to judges; and published scholarship in leading journals.

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MEANINGFUL RESULTS

Our work has changed lives and changed the law.  For example, the firm secured the compassionate release of Adam Clausen, obtaining a substantial reduction of his federal sentence from 213 years to time served.  We have prevailed in federal appellate and district courts throughout the country in constitutional, civil, and criminal matters. 

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Representative Cases

Below is a list of the firm's

recent cases, and relevant opinions or filings.  Please note that past successes are no guarantee of any future outcomes. 

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  • United States v. Clausen (U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania): successfully represented the Defendant, an incarcerated individual, in obtaining compassionate release, reducing a 213-year sentence to 20 years 4 months (time served), where the Defendant had been convicted of possessing a firearm in connection with multiple robberies [opinion]
     

  • Butler v. Pennington (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit): successfully represented the Appellee, a former public defender who was terminated after raising concerns about prosecutorial misconduct, in First Amendment and retaliation case [opinion]
     

  • United States v. Maxwell (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit): successfully obtained reversal for the Appellant, an incarcerated individual, whom the district court deemed ineligible for relief under First Step Act [opinion]

  • NetChoice v. Paxton (U.S. Supreme Court; U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit): represented acclaimed Columbia Law School Professor Philip Hamburger as amicus curiae in support of the Texas Attorney General's appeal against a trade association representing Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. After victory in the Fifth Circuit, filed amicus brief in the Supreme Court opposing an emergency application to stay the Fifth Circuit's ruling. [Supreme Court brief; 5th Circuit brief]

  • United States v. Pannell (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit): won a certificate of appealability on behalf of defendant serving 18-year sentence for armed postal robbery consecutively with 7-year sentence for brandishing a firearm under 18 U.S.C. § 924(c); argued that the § 924(c) count was invalid because the robbery is not a "crime of violence" when Pinkerton liability forms the basis for conviction. [motion for certificate of appealability; reply; order]

  • United States v. Tagliaferri (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York): successfully obtained reconsideration for the Defendant, an incarcerated individual who was denied compassionate release [motion]
     

  • United States v. Hazelwood (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit): successfully represented Appellant, a company president, in obtaining reversal of convictions and 150-month sentence in $56 million federal wire fraud case [opinion]; and successfully obtained bail pending appeal to permit Appellant to remain at home rather than spending any time in prison [order]. On remand, the government moved to dismiss all charges, and our client was fully exonerated.
     

  • United States v. Mitsakos (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York): successfully represented the Defendant in obtaining modification of terms of supervised release [order]

  • United States v. Bryant (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit): litigated appeal of the denial of compassionate release on behalf of a former police officer serving a 49-year sentence [brief
     

  • United States v. Lundergan (U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky): successfully obtained bail pending appeal to permit Defendant to remain at home until appeal was decided [order]; assisted local counsel in securing well-below-Guidelines sentence for campaign-finance charges 
     

  • United States v. Omar (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit): currently representing the Defendant, a physician, in wire-fraud and healthcare-fraud case [case is pending]
     

  • United States v. Dunham (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit): represented the Defendant, convicted in $50 million fraud matter, in challenge of the validity of a Rule 11 proffer waiver [brief]
     

  • Green Island Heaven & Hell, Inc. v. D.C. Alcohol Beverage Control Board (District of Columbia Court of Appeals): currently representing the Petitioner, an immigrant owner of a bar and restaurant, in due process and substantial-evidence challenge to administrative agency's imposition of fine [brief; case is pending]

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1701 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

Suite 200

Washington, DC 20006

(202) 769-4080

email: contact@hopwoodsinghal.com