This article discusses how courts have handled the remedy dilemma presented by unfulfillable plea bargains. Part I analyzes the seminal Supreme Court opinion on the broken plea bargain question, Santobello v. New York. This section concludes that choice-of-remedy is not entirely a matter of lower court discretion. Rather, Santobello delegates to lower courts the authority to develop a law of remedies which conforms to the underlying principles of that decision. Part I also focuses on what courts have done with this mandate, discussing the elements of decision courts have developed to remedy unfulfillable plea bargains. Finally, Part II suggests a model analysis, requiring a presumption of specific performance when the defendant can show detrimental reliance on the unfulfillable bargain.
Stuart L. Gasner,
Specific Performance of "Unfulfillable" Plea Bargains,
U. Mich. J. L. Reform
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mjlr/vol14/iss1/7