October 22, 2021
Weil worked with Fair and Just Prosecution, a project of the Tides Center, to submit an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court. The brief supports the U.S. Department of Justice’s emergency motion to the Court opposing the Fifth Circuit’s order staying preliminary injunction of S.B. 8, Texas’ six-week abortion ban. S.B. 8 is a privately enforced ban that incentivizes citizens with a $10,000 bounty to bring lawsuits against anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. Amicus curiae are nearly 120 current and former prosecutors and law enforcement leaders, former state attorneys general, former federal and state court judges, and former U.S. Attorneys and U.S. Department of Justice officials.
The brief emphasizes that S.B. 8’s private enforcement mechanism encourages individuals to intrude into the personal and private lives of their fellow citizens and, if endorsed, would encourage states to pass copycat legislation in other legal contexts. Such legislation would allow states to circumvent federal law and Constitutional protections, would delegitimize law enforcement actors, and would undermine trust in the justice system and the rule of law.
The Weil team members include partner John P. Mastando III, counsel Lauren Bernstein, and associates Melissa Rutman, Tania C. Matsuoka, Frank T. Ungerer, Lauren Wands, Sherry Safavi and Michelle Gemmell.