Anyone who mistakenly thought the departure of Preet Bharara would be the end of shenanigans by federal prosecutors and FBI agents in New York—actually, anyone interested in justice—will want to read carefully the scathing opinion and order issued this week by Judge Alison Nathan of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, in the case of United States of America v. Ali Sadr Hashemi Nejad. Judge Nathan is concerned after it emerged that federal prosecutors failed to meet their disclosure obligations. "When the Court pressed for more information about one of these failures, the Government made a misrepresentation to the Court. This serious dereliction requires a serious response," she wrote.
Judge Nathan writes: "the cost of such Government misconduct is high. With each misstep, the public faith in the criminal-justice system further erodes. With each document wrongfully withheld, an innocent person faces the chance of wrongful conviction. And with each unforced Government error, the likelihood grows that a reviewing court will be forced to reverse a conviction or even dismiss an indictment, resulting in wasted resources, delayed justice, and individuals guilty of crimes potentially going unpunished."
Good for the judge for holding the prosecutors accountable.