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Truckie-D
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Double Jeopardy?

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A story at: http://www.inforum.com/event/apArticle/id/D98667QO5/ tells the story of a truck driver involved on a fatal crash. The driver was found not guilty of all charges in a criminal trial, but was later convicted on 5 counts of falsifying his logbook, and now faces up to 25 years in federal prison.

When a driver falsifies a log entry, and is caught, the usual thing is a citation, and maybe an out-of-service order. The fine amount varies from state to state, and depends on the severity of the violation(s).

It appears to me, that because the driver wasn’t convicted in his criminal trial, that it was decided to prosecute him again, this time in Federal court, in order to convict him of something, so that he could be punished for something that he was found not guilty of.

Punishing the guilty is generally held to be an appropriate course of action, but to quote from the 5th amendment: "…nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb…"

From the story linked above: "…The bus crash will be part of the sentencing considerations…"

Taken together, it sounds an awful lot like double jeopardy to me.

I’m sure there’s some legal something or other that allows this to happen, but to me, it smells.

Comments, questions, and legal explanations are welcome.