PRINT PAGERichard Strafer1/19/51 - 7/21/17

For more than a decade, Richard Strafer worked with BSKS on appeals and motion practice, and in June 2016, formally joined the Firm's appellate division.  

Mr. Strafer was a dedicated attorney nationally known for providing the highest quality appellate representation. He received his law degree from Northeastern University School of Law in 1980, and his Master of Laws (Appellate Practice) from Georgetown University Law Center in 1983. Before moving to Miami in the summer of 1983, Richard taught Appellate Advocacy in Georgetown's Appellate Litigation Clinical Program.

Mr. Straferprovided appellate counseling at the trial level and drafted motions and jury instructions on major legal issues that would arise during the course of complex criminal cases.


BSKS Experience

Over the years, Mr. Strafer worked closely with the Firm on many cases, and listed below are some of them:

  • Kaley v. United States, U.S. Supreme Court Case No. 12-464 (March 2013).  The United States Supreme Court accepted this case to review the question of whether criminal defendants who cannot use their assets to retain counsel of choice because of an asset freeze have the constitutional right to challenge the government's underlying charges during a pretrial hearing.  Click here to see the various pleadings related to the case. 

  • United States v. Ignasiak, 667 F.3d 1217 (11th Cir. 2012). Reversing conviction, holding that the admission of autopsy reports and testimony about the reports, without live testimony from the experts who performed the autopsies, violated the Confrontation Clause; also holding that the sealing of impeachment material concerning another expert was improper under First Amendment standards. 

  • United States v. Kaley, 579 F.3d 1246 (11th Cir. 2009). Reversing district court for entering a post-indictment protective order which barred the defendants from using their assets to retain counsel-of-choice and remanding for an additional hearing. Click here to see the various pleadings related to the case. 

  • United States v. Ochoa, 428 F.3d 1015 (11th Cir. 2005). Holding that the district court's policy of "super-sealing" court records on a secret docket violated the First Amendment.

  • State v. John Goodman, Florida 4th DCA Case No. 4D12-1930 (2013). In a case full of motions and mayhem, juror misconduct, and appeals, a new trial was ultimately granted. Click here to see the various pleadings related to the case.

  • United States v. Marshall King, 11th Circuit Court of Appeals (6/2/17).  U.S. District Court.  The government appealed the non-custodial, probationary sentence of a 71-year-old real estate lawyer convicted of three counts of bank fraud. This is one of the few non-custodial sentences (100 percent variance) affirmed by the 11th Circuit when challenged by the government.  To read the 11th Circuit's opinion, click here.

Prior Experience

Prior to joining the Firm, he had his own private practice, G. Richard Strafer, P.A.  While in his own practice, he handled many state and federal appeals and other forms of post-conviction litigation. Mr. Strafer also provided appellate counseling at the trial level and assisted trial lawyers in writing motions and jury instructions on major legal issues that arise during the course of complex cases. 

For information on Mr. Strafer's significant cases and links to case decisions and materials, please click here.

Awards and Recognition

  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chambers U.S.A., The Client's Guide: "Litigation: Appellate Florida (Band 1) - Notable Practitioner" from 2005-2017:

    • From the 2017 Edition:  He is "well regarded in the market and is a go-to attorney for complex criminal appellate work."

    • From the 2016 Edition: "'He's brilliant and he always manages to come up with good arguments,' . . ."
    • From the 2013 Edition: "Criminal law specialist Richard Strafer is known as 'a warrior,' and impresses with 'his courage and commitment.' The Miami-based sole practitioner is held in high regard by his peers, who say that he is 'incredibly knowledgeable about issues of criminal procedure and law.'"

    • From the 2012 Edition: "Sole practitioner Richard Strafer is highly recommended for his expertise complex criminal matters and is described as the 'leading light on the Florida criminal defense Bar.'"

    • From the 2010 Edition: "G. Richard Strafer PA has a reputation as 'the premier criminal defense appellate lawyer in Miami' ... 'He can take a transcript, identify the issues and put together a brief faster than anyone I know,' confides one source."

    • From the 2008 Edition: "Commentators laud him as 'a brilliant writer and researcher who is excellent at criminal appeals.'"

    • From the 2007 Edition: "Richard Strafer is the dean of criminal appellate law in Florida whose record of successful reversals is as good as anyone's. He undertakes federal and state appeals and is much in demand for his strategic advice and trial support."

    • From the 2006 Edition: "Richard Strafer is among the best of the best and is the first choice when a criminal appeal crops up. A talented all-rounded attorney, he mainly undertakes federal and state criminal appeals, and is respected for his input at the trial stage."

    • From the 2005 Edition: "Peers see sole practitioner Richard Strafer as 'a premier appellate lawyer' in South Florida. Commentators praise him for being 'courageous in the causes he pursues.'"

  • Florida Trend: Florida Legal Elite, Florida's Legal Leaders (Appellate), 2004-2009, 2012, 2014-16

  • Florida Super Lawyers:
    • Top Florida Appellate Attorney, 2007-2010, 2012-2016
    • Top 100 Miami Super Lawyers, 2010, 2012-2015
    • Top 100 Florida Super Lawyers, 2010, 2012, 2014-2016
  • American Lawyer Media: Top Rated Lawyer in "Appellate Law" Edition of The American Lawyer & Corporate Counsel magazine, 2013

  • South Florida Legal Guide: Top Lawyer, Appellate, Criminal Defense/Criminal Law, 2004-2017

  • Best Lawyers®: Listed in Lawyers of the Year, 2016

  • Best Lawyers In America®, 1999-2018: Appellate Practice, 2006-2018; Bet-the-Company Litigation, 2010-2018; Commercial Litigation, 2010-2018; Criminal Defense: White-Collar, 2006-2018; Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar/General Practice, 2006-2018

  • Best Law Firms, U.S. News: Listed Miami Tier 1: Appellate Practice; Criminal Defense: White Collar and Non-White-Collar; Commercial Litigation; Listed National Tier 3: Appellate Practice, U.S. News, 2014-2015

  • International Who's Who of Business Crime Defence Lawyers, 2012-2013

  • America's Most Honored Professionals - Top 1%, 2015

  • America's Most Honored Professionals - Top 10%, 2011-2012

  • Daily Business Review: Top Business Lawyers in Appellate Litigation, 12/9/02, 4/26/04

  • Rodney Thaxton Liberty’s Last Champion Memorial Award, co-recipient. Award given annually by the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers: "For His Advocacy On Behalf of the Innocent Accused Against All Odds Until Justice Prevailed," May 13, 2000. See "Win at All Costs: Wrath of Vengeance," by Bill Moushey.


AV® Preeminent™ and BV® Distinguished™ are certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies.

Court Admissions

  • Florida, 1984
  • U. S. Supreme Court, 1994
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit, 1997
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 1990
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, 1997
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit, 1986
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, 2005
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1998
  • U. S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 1984
  • U. S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 1986
  • U. S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, 2011


  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • American Bar Association

Published Articles

Beyond the Office

Mr.Strafer was an avid runner and bicyclist. HecompetedintwoWorldChampionshipDuathlons. 

 In 2007, he competed in Gyor, Hungary, finishing 22nd in his age group.

 In 2011, he competed in Gijon, Spain, finishing 8th in his age group.