As of May 6, 2014, William Kent has been attorney of record on 521 criminal appeals, consisting of 333 federal criminal appeals and 188 state appeals.
Member of American Constitution Society
Designated a Super Lawyer for Appellate Practice
2012 and 2013
Florida Bar Appellate Court Rules Committee, 2004 - 2008.
Member of Florida Bar Committee which proposes rules governing appellate practice in all Florida courts.
Moot Court Judge for Benitez v. INS
Moot Court Judge for petitioner, Benitez, in Benitez v. INS, John S. Mills, Mills & Carlin, Petitioner's counsel.
Federal Public Defender, Middle District of Florida, Jacksonville, Florida, Assistant Federal Defender, July 1989 to June 29, 1999.
State Public Defender, Fourth Judicial Circuit, Jacksonville and Fernandina Beach, Florida, January 1988 to June 1989.
Rogers & Wells, now known as Clifford Chance Rogers & Wells, 200 Park Avenue, New York, New York and 201 North Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, California, July 1983 to February 1987.
Lawler, Felix & Hall, 700 South Flower Street, Los Angeles, California, March 1981 to June 1983. My practice group, transactional real estate, is now a separate firm known as Pircher, Nichols & Meeks.
Adams, Duque & Hazeltine, 523 West Sixth Street, Los Angeles, California, January 1980 to February 1981. My practice area, real estate, was headed by Alan Wayte, who went on to establish the Los Angeles branch of Dewey Ballantine LLP.
Smathers & Thompson, 1301 Alfred I. duPont Building, Miami, Florida,
July 1978 to January 1980. My practice group became the Miami office of
Drye & Warren LLP.
The Perry Place building is a bungalow home built in 1918 and designed by Jacksonville's most famous architect, Henry John Klutho. This home is one of over 100 houses that Klutho individually designed and supervised the construction of as part of a federal government housing project during World War I to provide housing for the shipyard workers needed in Jacksonville to build ships for the United States Merchant Marine. The house was designed in the Arts and Crafts style with distinctive Arts and Crafts features.
For the previous ten years I worked as an Assistant Federal Public Defender in Jacksonville, and for one year before that as an assistant state public defender in Jacksonville and Fernandina Beach, Florida. My practice as an Assistant Federal Public Defender was limited to federal criminal and habeas cases, at both the district court and appellate level. Approximately two thirds of my case load was at the district court level and one third at the appellate level. My appellate work included one case which I argued before the United States Supreme Court and one case which I argued before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals en banc. I was named "Outstanding Assistant Federal Public Defender," in 1998. 1996, 1993 and 1991.
Prior to that for seven years my practice was limited to corporate real estate related matters of every type handled by a New York based national law firm.
My appellate practice has resulted in numerous published
federal opinions. As of November 12, 2008, William Kent
has been attorney of record on 318
criminal appeals, consisting of
202 federal criminal
appeals and 116 state appeals. Most notable was the opinion of the Supreme Court
v. United States, 508 U.S. 36, 113 S.Ct. 1913, 123 L.Ed.2d
598 (1993), holding that Sentencing Commission commentary that is not inconsistent
with the pertinent guideline, statute or the constitution is binding on
courts of appeal, but remanding the question whether the commentary in
question was to be applied retroactively, and on remand United States
v. Stinson, 30 F.3d 121 (11th Cir. 1994), holding that Amendment
433, which provided that the offense of felon in possession of a firearm
was not a crime of violence for purposes of application of the career offender
provision, was clarifying commentary and as such entitled to retroactive
application. Other notable appellate opinions include United States
v. Willie Washington, ___F.3d___(1998 WL 546174)(11th Cir. 1998),
holding that consent to search a bus passenger who was found to be carrying
a minimum mandatory quantity of cocaine was coerced, focusing on the failure
of the federal officers to advise the defendant that he had a right to
refuse to consent to the search, United States v. James Arthur Grimes,
142 F.3d 1342 (11th Cir. 1998) holding that: (1) the underlying statute
did not facially exceed Congress's authority under the Commerce Clause;
(2) apartment building damaged in explosion had sufficient connection with
interstate commerce; (3) defendant was not entitled to procedural benefits
afforded to defendants in capital cases; (4) claim of rights form signed
by defendant when he was arrested on state worthless check charges could
not anticipatorily invoke defendant's Fifth Amendment right to remain silent;
(5) statements that defendant made to his former employer were not result
of custodial interrogation for Miranda purposes; (6) applying amended seven
year limitations period to defendant did not violate Ex Post Facto Clause;
and (7) sentencing judge's imposition of sentence did not violate Ex Post
Facto Clause, United States v. Lopez-Iraeta, 129 F.3d 1206
(11th Cir. 1998), holding that the "exculpatory no" doctrine did not apply
to false claims of United States citizenship cases, Anderson v. Singletary,
111 F.3d 801 ((1997), holding that the Prison Litigation Reform Act's filing
fee requirements did not apply to state or federal habeas corpus petitions
of indigent petitioners, United States v. Thigpen, 989 F.2d
1116 (11th Cir. 1993), 4 F.3d 1573 (11th Cir. 1993) (en banc), holding
that a criminal defendant is not entitled to a jury instruction on the
consequence of a verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity, United
States v. Brown, 71 F.3d 845 (11th Cir. 1995) (petition for certiorari
pending), holding that a defendant is not entitled to trial by jury on
multiple petty offenses when the aggregate maximum penalty exceeds six
months, United States v. Bell, 22 F.3d 274 (11th Cir. 1994),
reversing a denial of a motion to withdraw plea and holding that Container
Royalty Funds were not covered under the statute criminalizing embezzlement
from ERISA related funds, United States v. Williams, 958
F.2d 337 (11th Cir. 1992), holding that a court may not impose an additional
term of supervised release upon revocation of a term of supervised release
(since statutorily overruled), United States v. Charles Young,
953 F.2d 1288 (11th Cir. 1992), setting aside a $1,500,000 restitution
order under the Hughey doctrine (since statutorily overruled), United
States v. Lazarchik, 924 F.2d 211 (11th Cir. 1991), holding that
the gross weight of pharmaceutical compounds or mixtures is used in applying
the quantity tables of the drug guidelines (since overruled by the Sentencing
Commission) and United States v. Gilbert, 942 F.2d 1537 (11th
Cir. 1991), denying a motion to suppress based on execution of a state
search warrant the execution of which was concededly illegal under state
law. In addition, I have had one district court decision published, United
States v. Grimes, ___F.Supp.___, 1996 WL 11837 (M.D.Fla. 1996),
in which Judge Schlesinger denied a motion to suppress statements based
upon a claimed violation of a Fifth Amendment right to counsel.
Notable transactions included representation of Chemical Bank as gap
lender in $250,000,000 acquisition by VMS Realty Corp. of four Southern
California office buildings; representation of Saudi Arabian investors
in $60,000,000 work-out negotiations with FSLIC appointed managers of Sunrise
Savings & Loan involving four properties (office building, shopping
center and two residential condominium projects) in Southern Florida; representation
of tax shelter syndicator in joint venture of major multi-family housing
project in Virginia including negotiation of tax-exempt bond financing
issued by municipal housing authority; representation of American Diversified
developer/lender in joint venture disposition of $50,000,000 package of
six properties in three Western states; representation of American Diversified
in joint venture disposition of $30,000,000 two project package (office
building rehabilitation tax credit venture and multi-family housing project)
involving issuance of credit enhanced tax exempt financing; representation
of tax shelter syndicator in joint venture development of numerous multi-family
housing projects across United States; representation of JMB Realty Corp.
publicly registered tax shelter partnerships in $90,000,000 sale of nine
projects in Texas and Arizona to Hall Realty; representation of Chemical
Bank in gap loan to VMS Realty in $500,000,000 acquisition of apartment
projects in California; numerous joint venture development deals for JMB
Realty including the Tiger Building, Century City, California, Permian
Mall, Odessa, Texas, Virginia Beach Mall, Virginia Beach, Virginia, 2001
Building, Seattle, Washington, the DeBartolo Malls, and others; and joint
venture lending representation for Metropolitan Life Insurance Company,
Connecticut General Life Insurance Company, Lloyds Bank, and others secured
by office buildings and shopping malls in Southern California.