Legal Ethics

Judge Seeks Prosecutor Probe

The chief federal judge in Boston has asked disciplinary authorities to investigate a prosecutor who failed to turn over exculpatory material in a Mafia case.

Judge Mark Wolf placed his letter to state disciplinary authorities in the court file yesterday, Adam Liptak reports in the New York Times. In another letter, he takes the Justice Department to task for imposing only a secret reprimand on the assistant U.S. attorney, Jeffrey Auerhahn.

Wolf ordered Vincent Ferrara released from prison in 2005 because Auerhahn failed to disclose a detective’s handwritten memo detailing another man’s confession. Walter Jordan told the detective he had failed to get Ferrara’s permission before he participated in a murder, but at trial he testified Ferrara ordered the crime.

Ferrara pleaded guilty following the testimony.

Wolf noted that DOJ issued the private reprimand while maintaining in court documents that there was no duty to disclose the memo.

The newspaper did not reach Auerhahn for comment.

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