Supreme Response: Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor submitted her questionnaire to the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, and in the lengthy document the circuit court judge reveals she was contacted by the White House three days before Justice David Souter announced his plan to retire, The BLT reports. The questionnaire also shows that Zuckerman Spaeder partner Leslie Kiernan, a specialist in congressional investigations, ethics and white-collar criminal defense, was among the first to interview Sotomayor. The New York Times piece and an article here in The Washington Post both explore Sotomayor's focus on diversity and struggle in her speeches.
Here Comes the SEC: The Securities and Exchange Commission announced yesterday that the former chief executive officer of Countrywide Financial Corp., Angelo Mozilo, has been charged with securities fraud and insider trading, The National Law Journal reports. Mozilo marks a high-profile target as the SEC grapples with the subprime mortgage meltdown. The SEC also brought securities fraud charges against former chief operating officer and president David Sambol, and former chief financial officer Eric Sieracki. The civil complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
First Ted Stevens, Then Others: The Justice Department acknowledged Thursday that prosecutors in two corruption cases in Alaska withheld evidence from the lawyers representing former Alaska state representatives Victor Kohring and Peter Kott, an admission that follows the collapse of the Ted Stevens prosecution in April, The BLT reports. Justice lawyers say Kohring and Kott should be released from custody and that additional proceedings should be held in federal district court in Alaska. Kohring and Kott were convicted on charges that include bribery. The charges against Stevens were dismissed at the request of the Justice Department. But there was no immediate word whether Justice will follow the same path in the cases against Kohring and Kott.
Top Prosecutor Ditched: The California State Bar's top prosecutor, Scott Drexel, whose tough stance on attorney misconduct has angered county prosecutors and discipline-defense lawyers, was let go this week, The Recorder reports. Drexel, 60, a state bar employee for more than 30 years, had served as chief trial counsel for four years. There was no immediate explanation for the bar's decision.