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Justice Dept. Calls Ex-Detroit Fed Prosecutor Unmanageable

Ex-Prosecutor Richard Convertino

Ex-Prosecutor Richard Convertino

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Ex-Detroit federal prosecutor Richard Convertino, who became a controversial figure in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit, “was a nearly unmanageable employee who blew off reprimands, cut secret deals, kept his bosses in the dark, drummed up lucrative work for a snitch and tried to land a position for himself,” the Detroit Free Press reported, based on a court filing in Washington this week by the U.S. Justice Department.

The filing was part of a request before a judge by the Justice Department to dismiss Convertino’s whistleblower lawsuit. Convertino is in private practice in Michigan.

The Free Press reported that the Justice Department document quoted Convertino’s boss at the time, then-U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Collins, as saying  Convertino failed to keep him and others in management informed about a terrorism case following the 9/11 attacks or his dealings with Senate invesigators.

“It was almost (as if) you had an unmanageable employee,” the document said.

The Free Press said Convertino’s attorney Stephen Kohn characterized the allegation as “absurd and ridiculous” and a smear tactic.

Convertino was originally applauded after he successfully prosecuted a terrorism case that stemmed from raids right after Sept. 11, 2001. But the case imploded and the terrorism charges were eventually dropped.

The Justice Department eventually criminally charged Convertino with a variety of charges including that he failed to disclose materials in the case.

Convertino was acquitted of all of the charges, but he’s been involved in some lawsuits relating to the office. There continues to be bad blood between him and certain members of the office.

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