In People v. Cianciulli, Mr. Brissenden was retained by trial counsel to draft appellate briefs challenging the defendant’s conviction on charges of endangering public health, safety, or environment, and operating a solid waste management facility without a permit. He argued that the evidence presented at trial had been legally insufficient to convict the defendant on any of the felony counts. The Appellate Division, Second Department agreed and reversed such counts of conviction.
In United States v. Murphy, Mr. Brissenden challenged the defendant’s guilty plea on charges of traveling in interstate commerce for purposes of engaging in illicit sexual conduct, where it was clear from the record that the prosecutor, defense counsel, and the trial court all labored under a fundamental misunderstanding of that statute, and where the evidence did not support a finding of guilt. The Second Circuit agreed, vacating the defendant’s conviction, and remanding the matter back to the lower court for further proceedings.
In United States v. Atias, Mr. Brissenden represented an individual charged in Federal Court, in connection with an alleged mortgage fraud scheme. Following a lengthy investigation, Mr. Brissenden was able to demonstrate that his client’s name had been forged on the mortgage documents, proving that she had no involvement in the alleged scheme. As a result, all charges were dismissed.
In People v. Burton, Mr. Brissenden handled the appeal of an individual who had been convicted of multiple felonies, following a convenience store shooting, and was sentenced to twenty-two years' imprisonment. The client maintained that he had been wrongly identified and convicted. On appeal, Mr. Brissenden was able to demonstrate significant trial errors, which resulted in the conviction being overturned.
Mr. Brissenden represented the defendant on appeal, where he argued that his conviction was the result of an unconstitutional search. The appellate court agreed, and the defendant's conviction was reversed.
In United States v. Ghysels, Mr. Brissenden represented a stock broker in connection with his appeal from a conviction in a high-profile securities fraud case. On appeal, Mr. Brissenden argued that federal prosecutors had concealed important evidence which tended to show that the defendant was not guilty, and had pursued an unconstitutional theory of criminal liability. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit agreed, and the defendant’s conviction was vacated. The decision received extensive media coverage, including a feature in The Wall Street Journal.
In 2010, the defendant was charged with murder following a barroom altercation. Prior to trial, his lawyer had been offered an eight-year plea deal, but was warned by the trial judge that the defendant would be sentenced to 25 years if he failed to take the deal and was convicted. The defendant maintained his innocence, and insisted on his right to trial. Following trial, the defendant was acquitted of murder, but convicted of manslaughter. Nevertheless, the trial judge sentenced the defendant to 25 years, as promised.
Mr. Brissenden represented the defendant after his conviction, and challenged the 25-year sentence as unconstitutionally vindictive. In particular, Mr. Brissenden argued that the defendant was punished for exercising his constitutional right to trial. A federal district court agreed, and the sentence was vacated. The unusual decision received prominent coverage on the front page of The New York Law Journal.
In 2004, the defendant, a 15-year-old Haitian national, was arrested in Long Island for a series of felony and misdemeanor offenses. At the time of his arrest, he possessed a false identification, which represented that he was 18 years old. As a result, he was charged as an adult. At the advice of his public defender, K.E. pled guilty.
Years later, the defendant settled down in Florida, where he found work, married a U.S. Citizen, and had a child. In 2011, however, he was picked up by the INS and placed in deportation proceedings based upon his prior convictions.
Mr. Brissenden was retained by his family, and promptly moved to vacate the convictions based upon the fact that the defendant was a minor at the time of the alleged offenses. Mr. Brissenden enlisted the assistance of the Haitian Consulate, tracked down the defendant’s Haitian birth records, and was able to conclusively demonstrate that he was a minor at the time of the offenses. As a result, the defendant’s convictions were vacated, and he was subsequently released by the INS.
The defendant, a bookkeeper and office manager, was charged in federal court with stealing close to $600,000 from her former employer. Mr. Brissenden moved for a dismissal of the case based upon the prosecution’s failure to bring a timely indictment, arguing that important evidence had been lost due to a lengthy period of delay caused by the government. The Court dismissed the indictment with prejudice. This highly unusual legal victory was featured on the front page of The New York Law Journal.
In People v. Pape, Mr. Brissenden represented a prominent local attorney in his appeal from a trespassing conviction, which resulted when the attorney’s neighbor (a state trooper), accused the attorney of stepping off an easement and onto the state trooper’s property. On appeal, Mr. Brissenden utilized property records and video surveillance to argue that the evidence was insufficient to sustain the convictions. The appellate court agreed, and the conviction was vacated.
In United States v. Mahaffy, Stephen Scaring and Matthew Brissenden represented a stock broker charged with multiple counts of conspiracy and securities fraud. Following an eight-week jury trial in Federal Court, he was acquitted of 12 of 13 counts. The jury hung with respect to the sole remaining conspiracy count, which the Government subsequently agreed to dismiss.
In People v. Battisti, Scaring & Brissenden, PLLC represented a New York City Police officer charged with attempted first degree murder. The prosecution alleged that the defendant had hired a hit man to murder his ex-wife. The principal prosecution witness was the purported hit man, who had been arrested after assaulting the defendant’s ex-wife, and who had subsequently sought to make a deal with the prosecution by implicating the defendant in the attack.
Prior to trial, Mr. Brissenden successfully moved to suppress evidence which police officers had illegally obtained from the defendant's property. Thereafter, he spent weeks listening to and dissecting hundreds of recorded jailhouse telephone calls made by the purported hit man. The recordings, which had never been reviewed by the prosecution, revealed that their primary witness had repeatedly told his friends and family members that the testimony he planned to give at trial was untrue. Following trial, the defendant was acquitted on all counts.
Scaring & Brissenden represented the defendant, a high-level corporate executive at a global insurance brokerage, who was charged by the New York State Attorney General’s Office in an alleged bid-ridding scheme. After more than three years of litigation, prosecutors voluntarily dismissed all charges against the defendant.
Matthew Brissenden represented an auto-mechanic who had been charged as a member of a far-reaching narcotics conspiracy. Mr. Brissenden met repeatedly with prosecutors and secured a favorable plea agreement for the defendant. He thereafter prepared a detailed sentencing submission for the Court, which outlined the defendant’s minor role in the conspiracy, his stable employment history, his devotion to his family, and his remarkable efforts at post-arrest rehabilitation. As a result, the defendant was sentenced to time served (which amounted to several days imprisonment), supervised release, community service, and a fine.
Mr. Brissenden and Stephen Scaring represented a New York City public official charged with official misconduct. Messrs. Scaring and Brissenden tried the case in New York County Supreme Court, and the defendant was acquitted of all charges.
MATTHEW W. BRISSENDEN, P.C.
Criminal Defense Law
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