Attorney General proposes raise for death row attorneys

Attorney General proposes raise for death row attorneys

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PROVO, Utah (AP) -- The Utah Legislature could be reviewing a pay raise for defense attorneys who represent death row inmates in late appeals.

The Utah Attorney General's office has proposed increasing the cap on attorney fees from $37,500 to $60,000. The office hopes the money can get more lawyers to take up the appeals, which can be costly.

Although the Utah Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers favors raising the fee cap, it opposes one big part of proposal.

A clause in the Attorney General's proposal would also allow a judge to force a defendant to either serve as his own attorney or dismiss the appeal if a willing defense attorney can't be found.

The defense lawyers say that could leave some inmates out of luck.

Information from: The Daily Herald

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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