Legal Ethics

For the 2nd Time in Less Than 3 Months, Judge Sullivan Castigates DOJ

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For the second time in less than three months, Judge Emmett Sullivan offered blistering comments from the bench yesterday castigating the U.S. Department of Justice concerning its compliance with ethical obligations to turn over exculpatory evidence to the defense.

In the latest case, the Washington, D.C., federal district judge questioned whether the DOJ had violated D.C. Rules of Professional Conduct and standards contained in a U.S. Attorneys manual for federal prosecutors by either making or failing to correct false statements to the court, reports the Blog of Legal Times.

The judge did not make any formal finding of wrongdoing, however, and Paul O’Brien, who serves as chief of the DOJ Narcotic and Dangerous Drug Section says the government will provide a written response “to educate the court better” about its handling of a high-profile narcotics case against Zhenli Ye Gon.

“This is the second time in less than three months in a high-profile case where the Department of Justice has come before this court and asked it to dismiss an indictment after allegations that Brady-Giglio information was not timely produced to the defense,” Sullivan stated.

The DOJ has moved to dismiss without prejudice a drug conspiracy case against Ye Gon.

Earlier related coverage: “DOJ Seeks to Dismiss High-Profile Meth Case, Citing ‘Evidentiary Concerns’ “ “Special Prosecutor to Investigate Government Lawyers in Sen. Stevens Case”

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