Appeals & Post-Conviction Matters

For the attorneys at David B. Smith, PLLC, the fight for justice extends well beyond trial. Our practice includes a significant focus on federal criminal appeals and post-conviction litigation, acting on behalf of clients nationwide.

Our firm has a record of success at getting convictions overturned and sentences reduced. Our post-conviction practice includes:

  • Criminal appeals: David B. Smith and Nicholas D. Smith are accomplished appellate attorneys, having argued successfully before federal appellate courts. Mr. Smith served in the Appellate Section of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice and has continued to handle a substantial number of federal appeals in his defense practice. He has orally argued over 100 criminal cases and a number of civil forfeiture cases in the federal courts of appeals around the country. Many of these cases raised significant legal issues and over half of them resulted in published (precedential) opinions. Mr. Smith has also participated — through amicus briefs — on behalf of the NACDL, the Cato Institute and other libertarian public interest organizations, or by directly assisting counsel for the defense — in most of the civil and criminal forfeiture cases decided by the Supreme Court since the 1990s.
  • Collateral attacks: Our attorneys attack criminal convictions and sentences through habeas corpus proceedings and motions filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 2255. We also pursue relief from financial penalties via the ancient writ of coram nobis.
  • Probation and supervised release violations: Our firm represents clients who have been accused of violating the terms of their probation or supervised release.
  • Pardon applications: Our attorneys help clients with criminal convictions pursue clemency and commutations from the relevant authorities.

Among other successes, our attorneys obtained reversals of numerous convictions for money laundering, structuring and obstruction of justice in federal district court in Richmond on behalf of a client who was serving a 10-year federal sentence. The comprehensive, nearly 160-page § 2255 motion to vacate the conviction was so persuasive that the United States Attorney’s Office decided not to oppose it. Our client, a Richmond car dealer, was released immediately.

Our attorneys are prepared to take advantage of the full range of appellate and post-conviction mechanisms to protect our clients’ rights. To find out how we can assist you, contact us or request an appointment today.