• Andrew Ramonas
    Lobbying Reporter
  • Beth Frerking
    Editor in Chief
  • David Brown
    Vice President/Editor, ALM
  • Diego Radzinschi
    Photo Editor
  • Jenna Greene
    Senior Reporter
  • Marcia Coyle
    Chief Washington Correspondent
  • Mike Scarcella
    Washington Bureau Chief
  • Todd Ruger
    Capitol Hill Reporter
  • Tony Mauro
    Supreme Court Correspondent
  • Zoe Tillman
    D.C. Courts Reporter

« Knight to Return to PTO as General Counsel | Main | The Morning Wrap »

April 12, 2010



The non disclosure problem is not limited to criminal cases. It happens with regularity in civil cases as well.

The government is notorious for its flouting of the civil discovery rules. With rare exceptions, the federal judges in DC are equally notorious for their "see, hear and speak no evil" approach to DOJ's abuses.

I'm waiting for somebody to investigate THIS issue. But I don't think I'll hold my breath

Mark Sevigny

As someone who was a county prosecutor for over thirty years I can tell you the policy of the office I served was not to split hairs, but to turn over everything. Unless the law prohibited disclosure we disclosed it as a general rule. Occasionally things would get left out through inadvertance or where the investigating agency didn't turn certain reports over to us, but the norm was to give it all to the defense regardless of what the law said we could withhold. The only exception was in the area of confidential informant identities which we fiercely guarded. As a prosecutor, I didn't feel comfortable trying to guess what would be material, relevant, or helpful to the defense at that point in time or somewhere down the road. Determining materiality is the job of the defense and they are in the best position to know. Giving the defense everything just avoids the problem altogether, and I didn't lose sleep wondering if I had made the right decision. Not everyone in the office adhered religiously to this policy and I know one or two who came to grief later over a decision not to turn over some report they thought was unimportant. Why take the risk, not only to your reputation, but of a possible miscarriage of justice?

Eric Rasmusen

As always, it's the cover-up that really proves whether an organization is rotten. If DOJ says everything is fine when they have senior people in danger of going to prison for blatant rule violation, then DOJ's standards are pretty low.

"No problem-- completely routine for our anti-corruption chief to be cheating to put senators in jail when the evidence against them looks too weak to work without a thumb on the scale. Why would anybody care about a thing like that? Look at how many of our prosecutors *aren't* guilty of contempt of court. Lots of them!"

Does this remind anyone of the Roman Catholic church?

Note, too, all the talk about procedural reform, when the obvious problem is that the prosecutors aren't even obeying the current disclosure rules. How about starting by figuring out how to get people to comply with the rules we've got?


So the Department of Justice cleared itself after conducting an internal investigation?

Would DOJ similarly allow a corporation suspected of criminality to say, "We invested ourselves. We're clear."

How can anyone take the Department of Justice's "investigation" and "findings" seriously?

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad