Saturday, May 14, 2005

Criminal’s Sanctuary?


Can you commit crimes in certain areas of the US and be immune for prosecution?

The answer might be yes, with a criminal’s sanctuary near Yellowstone, where criminal can roam free to rob, rape, and murder.

Scene from Idaho Posted by Hello

A small swathe of Idaho could be the venue for the perfect crime.

Loophole may allow US crime spree
By Matthew Davis BBC News, Washington

A loophole in US law may allow people to get away with any major crime within a 50-square mile "zone of death" in eastern Idaho, according to a Michigan law professor.

This lawless oasis is said to exist on the edge of Yellowstone National Park because of a poorly drafted statute in the Sixth Amendment to the US Constitution.

Criminals are entitled to be tried by a jury drawn from the state and legal district they committed their crime in, the constitution says.

But, argues Prof Brian C Kalt, while Yellowstone comes entirely under the district of Wyoming, small parts of it spill into the states of Montana and Idaho.

"Say that you are in the Idaho portion of Yellowstone and you decide to spice up your vacation by going on a crime spree," Kalt writes in a forthcoming paper for the Georgetown Law Journal.

"You make some moonshine, you poach some wildlife, you strangle some people and steal their picnic baskets.


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