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Bruce R. Bryan

Federal Criminal Appeals

American-Justice - Bruce R. Bryan, Esq. - Criminal Appeals Attorney Syracuse NY | New York City

A FEDERAL APPEAL DEMANDS A HIGHLY EXPERIENCED APPELLATE ATTORNEY

Federal law is complex. Federal briefs must comply with strict rules of procedure. Federal appellate judges are demanding. Few attorneys can competently handle federal appeals because the appeals require extensive knowledge of federal law and appellate experience.

Appellate Attorney Bruce R. Bryan is highly experienced

Over his career of more than 20 years, Attorney Bruce R. Bryan has handled approximately 100 appeals to federal circuit courts of appeal. He has achieved success in difficult and complex federal cases. He has been appointed by the Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to the Attorney Advisory Committee on the Local Rules for the Court. He is an author on appeals and an Adjunct Professor of Appellate Advocacy at Cornell Law School, one of the nation’s leading legal institutions. He has the extensive knowledge and experience needed to represent clients on appeals to federal circuit courts of appeal.

Attorney Bryan primarily represents clients before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit encompassing the states of New York, Connecticut, and Vermont. He also is available for appeals to other federal circuit courts of appeal, criminal appeals in New York State, civil appeals in New York State, appeals in other states, and appeals to the Supreme Court of the United States.

I. Federal Criminal Appeals

Attorney Bryan has broad experience in handling federal criminal appeals. He also authored a book on criminal appeals in New York and law review articles on federal criminal law subjects. He is a lecturer to attorneys at continuing legal education programs on federal criminal appeals to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

The following are examples of federal crimes:

  • White collar crimes
  • Health care fraud/Medicare fraud/Medicaid fraud
  • Wire and mail fraud
  • Internet crimes
  • Tax fraud
  • Securities fraud
  • Mortgage fraud/real estate fraud
  • Money laundering
  • Drug trafficking/importation
  • RICO/racketeering
  • Environmental criminal violations

The government may also charge conspiracy or aiding and abetting in the commission of a crime.

Issues on Criminal Appeals. A criminal appeal from a felony conviction contends that errors occurred in the district court that resulted in the defendant’s wrongful conviction and imprisonment. It may further argue that errors deprived the defendant of due process and a fair trial or just sentence.

Pre-trial Errors. There are a number of errors that can occur prior to trial. For example, the district court may have erred in denying a motion to suppress evidence or statements based on an illegal search and seizure that violated a defendant’s constitutional rights. The government may have failed to disclose exculpatory evidence in violation of its discovery obligations under Brady. The defendant may have challenged the constitutionality of a criminal statute or its application to his case. A defendant may have been denied a hearing on a claim that the Government had breached a plea agreement.

Trial Errors. Countless errors can occur that affect the fairness of the trial. For example, a defendant may claim that the district court erred in admitting hearsay evidence or excluding circumstantial evidence, the judge improperly limited cross-examination or testimony, the government committed prosecutorial misconduct in remarks during the opening statement or summation, the government’s theory of guilt varied from the indictment, a mistrial should have been granted because the jury became tainted by trial publicity, or the court erred in its charge or legal instructions to the jury on the elements of the offense. A defendant may also claim on appeal that he was rendered ineffective assistance by defense counsel or that there was insufficient evidence to support his conviction.

Sentencing Errors. The district court can commit errors during the federal sentencing phase of the case, either in the application of the United States Sentencing Guidelines or Non-Guideline sentencing. For example, the judge can make an improper Guideline calculation or adjustment resulting in an increased sentencing recommendation. The judge can err in the application of a mandatory minimum sentence under a statute. The court can err when imposing restitution or terms of supervised release. The sentence may be unreasonable.

II. Federal Civil Appeals

Attorney Bryan’s extensive civil law background, including his experiences as a Wall Street lawyer and civil trial attorney in West Palm Beach, Florida, provide an excellent basis for handling federal civil appeals.

Federal civil actions are based on “diversity of citizenship” or “federal questions.” The following are some examples of federal civil actions:

Diversity Actions

  • Breach of contract
  • Negligence
  • Wills, estates, and trusts
  • Product liability and personal injury
  • Property
  • Corporations and partnerships

Federal Questions

  • Banking
  • Securities
  • Taxation
  • Native American law
  • Bankruptcy

Issues on Civil Appeals. A civil appeal contends that errors occurred in the district court that should reverse or modify the result of the case.

Pre-trial Issues. There are a number of issues that can arise prior to trial that may result in an appeal. For example, a district court may have decided the interpretation or construction of a statute adversely to a party. The district court may have decided a motion for summary judgment in which it agreed with one party’s claim that there was no question of fact for a jury to resolve.

Trial Issues. Numerous legal issues can occur at trial that may result in an appeal. For example, a party may claim that the district court erred in admitting or excluding evidence, the judge improperly limited cross-examination, or the court erred in the legal instructions or charge to the jury.

Award or Remedy. A party may claim that the award or remedy was improper.

B. Bryan, "Defendant's Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York," (2005)


Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York | Bryan Criminal Appeals Lawyer NY

The object of appellate advocacy is to persuade. The winning advocate focuses the court on the strength of your case. Read More

Cornell Adjunct Professor of Law


Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York | Bryan Criminal Appeals Lawyer NY

As an adjunct faculty, Professor Bryan teaches "Advanced Persuasive Writing and Appellate Advocacy" to second and third year law students at Cornell Law School. Read More