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N.Y. Times Editorial Congratulates A.G. Eric Holder For Dismissing Sen. Stevens Case

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder

For eight years the Bush Justice Department cynically put politics and ideology above the law. So it is gratifying to see how Attorney General Eric Holder is handling the case against Ted Stevens, the former Alaska senator who was convicted last year on seven felony counts of ethics violations.

Mr. Holder announced this week that he would ask a judge to drop all charges against Mr. Stevens, a Republican, because of prosecutorial misconduct. Mr. Holder should ensure that the Justice Department gets to the bottom of what went wrong and subject other cases that have raised red flags to similar scrutiny.

Mr. Stevens was convicted of making false statements on Senate disclosure forms to hide an estimated $250,000 in home renovations and gifts, many from Bill Allen, an old friend with close ties to his state’s oil industry. The Justice Department says that prosecutors failed to turn over to the defense notes from an interview with Mr. Allen, a prime witness in the case, which conflicted with parts of his trial testimony.

Prosecutors are legally required to turn over evidence in their possession that would help a defendant prove his innocence. This revelation is only the latest in a series of instances in which Mr. Stevens’s prosecutors appear to have acted wrongly.

To Read the Rest

Read Allan Lengel’s Commentary on the Ted Stevens Case (ticklethewire.com)


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