Prosecution Criticized For Strategy In O’Brien Trial
Three former leaders of the Massachusetts Probation Department were convicted July 24 in a federal racketeering trial. After the trial, questions remain about House Speaker Robert DeLeo and the government's allegations that he was a central figure in the crimes committed by the former probation commissioner, John O' Brien.
Several people wondered, including former federal prosecutors, why it was appropriate for prosecutors to tell jurors that DeLeo worked alongside O'Brien in bribery but never charged DeLeo.
Partner Daniel Small said, “It’s just an extraordinary step away from normal practice and normal fairness. The Department of Justice guidelines call for prosecutors to be understandably very careful in making any unnecessary public references to uncharged parties, because an uncharged party has no rights to come into court and defend themselves.”