Robert Weisberg, a professor at Stanford Law School, said having a defendant acknowledge guilt in detail in a courtroom is an important symbolic function of the criminal justice system.
“Often the purpose is to give victims a better sense of justice,” he said. “With PG&E it may be intended to constructively humiliate the company.”
But Weisberg also said that given the scrutiny, penalties and settlements PG&E now faces, it isn’t necessary for Butte County to add another layer of formal probation.
“PG&E is just an open book now,” Weisberg said. “Its activities are so rigorously controlled by the bankruptcy court, civil suits, and the federal monitor.”Read More