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Boston Federal Judges To Teach Classes on Turning Over Evidence as a Result of Recent Case

Chief Judge Mark L. Wolf

Chief Judge Mark L. Wolf

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Federal prosecutors, defense attorneys and judges in Boston will get an education about turning over evidence to the defense for trial. The issue recently became a hot-button topic and an embarrassment when the Justice Department voided the conviction in Washington of ex-Sen. Ted Stevens after the prosecution failed to turn over evidence to the defense.

Chief U.S. District Judge Mark L. Wolf in Boston announced that two judges will hold educational classes in the fall on turning over evidence for trial in response to a recent case in Boston in which Assistant U.S. Attorney Suzanne Sullivan failed to turn over evidence to the defense , the Boston Globe reported.

Sullivan acknowledged to the judge that she withheld evidence in trial that could have cleared a defendant in a gun case. Wolf had planned to sanction her, but on on Monday said she appeared contrite and would hold off on taking any action against her or the U.S. Attorney’s Office for at  least six months, the Globe reported.

Judge Wolf had concluded that Sullivan’s actions were inadvertent,  but  “inexcusable”  and showed a  “fundamentally flawed understanding of her obligations, or a reckless disregard of them”, he the Globe reported.

Wolf said repeated failures by Massachusetts federal prosecutors “made him doubt that the Justice Department was adequately training prosecutors”, the Globe reported.


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