Bloomberg reports that the U.S. Court of Appeals said prosecutors in Brooklyn, New York failed to disclose until after the trial 30 deposition transcripts taken by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, some of which would have supported the defense of ex-Merrill Lynch broker Kenneth Mahaffy Jr. and others.
Such 'violations obscure a trial’s truth-seeking function and, in so doing, place criminal defendants at an unfair disadvantage', a three-judge panel wrote today in ruling that prosecutors violated a legal duty to turn over exculpatory information.
It’s unclear whether prosecutors will seek to retry the defendants, who were convicted at a 2009 trial of conspiracy after their first trial ended in hung jury on that count. The first trial, in 2007, resulted in an acquittal on the other 38 counts.
'In light of the government’s mishandling of material exculpatory and impeaching material, we wonder whether the government will choose to subject the defendants to yet a third trial', the New York-based appeals court said.
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