Informants & Cooperators

Bridging the Gap: A Report on Scholarship and Criminal Justice Reform (Erik Luna ed., 2017), Forthcoming

Columbia Public Law Research Paper No. 14-543

17 Pages Posted: 11 Mar 2017 Last revised: 24 Mar 2017

Daniel C. Richman

Columbia Law School

Date Written: March 8, 2017

Abstract

The police have long relied on informants to make critical cases, and prosecutors have long relied on cooperator testimony at trials. Still, concerns about these tools for obtaining closely held information have substantially increased in recent years. Reliability concerns have loomed largest, but broader social costs have also been identified. After highlighting both the value of informants and cooperators and the pathologies associated with them, this chapter explores the external and internal measures that can or should be deployed to regulate their use.

Keywords: informants, plea bargaining, cooperating witnesses, prosecutorial disclosure

JEL Classification: K14, K41, K42

Suggested Citation

Richman, Daniel C., Informants & Cooperators (March 8, 2017). Bridging the Gap: A Report on Scholarship and Criminal Justice Reform (Erik Luna ed., 2017), Forthcoming ; Columbia Public Law Research Paper No. 14-543. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2929715

Daniel C. Richman (Contact Author)

Columbia Law School ( email )

435 West 116th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States

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