Tuesday, December 15, 2009
It is rare that a judge uses supervisory powers to correct an injustice, but sometimes it is the right action - especially when there has been government misconduct. The Hon. Cormac J. Carney used his supervisory powers to dismiss the case against former Broadcom's Henry Nicholas III, and former CFO William Ruehle, stating:
"Based on the complete record now before me, I find that the Government has intimated and improperly influenced the three witnesses critical to Mr. Ruehle's defense. The cumulative effect of that misconduct has distorted the truth-finding process and compromised the integrity of the trial."
The court noted how the government had intimated three witnesses. He includes how the government improperly leaked items to the press, put a witness through "30 grueling interrogations," pressured the company to terminate the employment of this witness, and obtained a plea from a witness for crimes he did not commit - and there were more improprieties noted by the court. The court ends with the words from the Supreme Court decision in Berger, and then states: "I sincerely regret that the government did not heed the righteous words of the Supreme Court."
Court's Order -Download RUEHLE_DEC__15
(esp)(blogging from Atlanta)