More than a Dozen New Justice Attorneys Have Conflicts of Interest in Guantanomo Cases

As one might expect, new regimes that bring in private attorneys to do government work can bump up against conflict of interests. Here’s one of which I’m certain will not be the the last conflict of interest issue the Justice Department will have to deal with.

Joe Palazzolo
Legal Times
WASHINGTON – More than a dozen new Justice Department lawyers have come from private firms representing Guantanamo Bay detainees, creating potential conflicts of interest as the agency begins its review of roughly 245 men imprisoned at the military detention center.

The Justice Department has taken steps to avoid the appearance of impropriety. Ethics officials have advised lawyers — including Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. — to recuse themselves in matters involving detainees represented by their former firms.

“As a general rule, DOJ officials will not participate in reviews of specific detainees who their firms represented, consistent with ethics rules,” Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd said in an e-mailed statement.

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