Midyear Meeting 2008
ABA Calls For Tighter Prosecution Ethics Rules
The ABA’s 555-member policy-making House of Delegates has called on states to amend their legal ethics rules to require prosecutors to disclose evidence creating a reasonable likelihood that a defendant did not commit the crime for which he or she was convicted, and to take steps to remedy such convictions.
The obligation would be triggered when the prosecutor has knowledge of the evidence within the meaning of the model ethics rules.
The measure (DOC), 105B, passed by an overwhelming voice vote at the ABA Midyear Meeting in Los Angeles this morning. No one spoke in opposition.
Stephen Saltzburg, chair of the ABA’s Criminal Justice Section and a professor at the George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C., told the House, “The rules are very simple: if prosecutors have new, credible evidence of innocence, they have to do something about it. It’s not a big burden.”