Statement Supporting Professor Ron Sullivan

MACDL has issued a statement in support of Harvard Law School Professor Ron Sullivan, after Harvard College declined to renew his status as a faculty dean following student protests based upon his choice to defend Harvey Weinstein in a criminal case. No attorney should face adverse consequences for choosing to represent a criminal defendant and Harvard’s decision in this case demonstrates a lack of respect […]

By |2019-05-14T15:18:00+00:00May 14th, 2019|News|Comments Off on Statement Supporting Professor Ron Sullivan

MACDL Elects John Amabile as New Vice President

On May 1, 2019, MACDL’s Board voted to elect Attorney John Amabile as the Association’s new Vice President. Mr. Amabile will take on that role in June 2019, supporting Victoria Kelleher, who will take office as MACDL’s President that month. Mr. Amabile will serve a two-year term as Vice President before succeeding Ms. Kelleher as MACDL’s President. Mr. Amabile is a Principal of the law firm Amabile & […]

By |2019-06-10T18:21:23+00:00May 2nd, 2019|News|Comments Off on MACDL Elects John Amabile as New Vice President

MACDL President Condemns Indictment of Judge

MACDL President Derege Demissie represented MACDL today in a debate on WGBH regarding U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling’s indictment of Massachusetts Judge Shelley M. Joseph for allegedly helping a defendant in her courtroom avoid detention by ICE agents. MACDL strongly condemns the actions of the U.S. Attorney in bringing this prosecution to intimidate state court judges. ICE’s actions in the courthouses of Massachusetts deny both US citizens and noncitizens due […]

By |2019-04-26T00:58:58+00:00April 26th, 2019|News, President's Messages|Comments Off on MACDL President Condemns Indictment of Judge

MACDL Supports Conditional Guilty Pleas

On February 28, 2019, MACDL submitted a comment in response to the amendment to Mass. R. Crim. P. 12 proposed by the Supreme Judicial Court’s Standing Advisory Committee on the Rules of Criminal Procedure. MACDL joined the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) in expressing support for allowing conditional guilty pleas for the first time in Massachusetts (following the SJC’s decision in

By |2019-04-02T14:41:58+00:00February 28th, 2019|News|Comments Off on MACDL Supports Conditional Guilty Pleas

NPR Features Exonerated Client of MACDL Board Member

Mark Schand scoops ice cream at his Sweetwater smoothie cafe in New Britain, Conn. This business is meant to reboot a career Schand says was stolen from him at the age of 19 when he was wrongfully convicted of a crime and was imprisoned for 27 years.
Photo: Karen Brown/NEPR

A recent NPR story features  Mark […]

By |2019-04-01T15:24:00+00:00February 25th, 2019|News|Comments Off on NPR Features Exonerated Client of MACDL Board Member

Get More Involved with MACDL

MACDL strives to be an inclusive statewide organization. The membership committee is looking for help to grow our ranks with criminal defense lawyers from across the state. If you are interested in helping us plan events and other opportunities to grow and support our membership please let us know—just send an email to and we will be in touch.

By |2018-11-01T15:31:07+00:00November 1st, 2018|News|Comments Off on Get More Involved with MACDL

MACDL Condemns Politically-Motivated Attacks

Media Contact: Derege Demissie | 617-354-3944 |

Boston, Mass. (May 23, 2018) — The Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL) condemns attempts by lawmakers to impeach Judge Timothy Feeley for his decision to sentence Manuel Soto-Vittini to two years of probation following his guilty plea to charges of drug distribution.

Contrary to many reports, Judge Feeley’s sentence was not intended to affect Mr. Soto-Vittini’s immigration status. Mr. Soto-Vittini’s […]

By |2018-05-24T13:54:25+00:00May 24th, 2018|News|Comments Off on MACDL Condemns Politically-Motivated Attacks

MACDL Strike Force Victory

The MACDL Strike Force Committee Chair, John Amabile , recently represented a MACDL member who was subpoenaed to testify against a client charged with conspiring to violate the drug laws. The case stemmed from an alleged incident where a family member brought an eyeglass case to court for the Defendant, who was in custody, When the lawyer was on her way to speak […]

By |2018-05-10T16:12:36+00:00May 10th, 2018|News|Comments Off on MACDL Strike Force Victory

Criminal Justice Reforms — Trees, Not Forest

In a letter to the editor, MACDL President Derege Demissie and Legislative Policy Chair Marty Rosenthal highlighted the failures of the Massachusetts Senate’criminal justice bill:

To the Editor [RE: “Criminal justice debate heats up” (Mon, Oct 9th)]:

The Senate’s criminal justice bill takes excellent steps towards USA’s recent Smart-on-Crime paradigm shift. But it’s important “trees” reforms fail three “forest” challenges: mass incarceration, broad racial injustice, and broader diversion from wasteful/harmful […]

By |2018-02-15T14:43:54+00:00February 15th, 2018|News, President's Messages|0 Comments

Increase Pay for Court Appointed Lawyers

Your IMMEDIATE help is needed! The Massachusetts Legislature is currently considering House Bill 751 increasing the rate of pay for their bar advocates. Sponsored by Rep Cronin of Easton, House Bill 751 proposes:

The rates of compensation payable to all counsel, who are appointed or assigned to represent indigents within the private counsel division of the committee in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (b) of section 6, shall, subject […]

By |2018-02-15T14:46:13+00:00February 15th, 2018|Action Alert, News|0 Comments