A federal judge called the case against Alaska Senator Ted Stevens the worst mishandling and misconduct he’d seen in 25 years.
Stevens was defeated by a Democrat challenger in November after he was convicted of crime less than one week before the election.
The charges have since been dropped.
The New York Times reported:
A furious federal judge on Tuesday took the extraordinary step of ordering that the prosecutors who bungled the case of former Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska be investigated for possible criminal wrongdoing.
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan dismissed the charges against Mr. Stevens, which was expected given the way the case has disintegrated since the conviction in October. But the judge went well beyond that step, declaring that what the prosecutors did was the worst “mishandling or misconduct that I’ve seen in my 25 years.”
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Judge Sullivan spoke disdainfully of the prosecutors’ repeated assertions that any mistakes during the trial were inadvertent and made in good faith. He said he had witnessed “shocking and serious” violations of the principle that prosecutors are obligated to turn over all relevant material to the defense.
The judge appointed the attorney Henry Schuelke as special prosecutor to investigate possible criminal contempt charges against the prosecution team…
One F.B.I. agent, Chad Joy, has said in an affidavit that he sat in on meetings in which Stevens prosecutors were clearly aware that they were ignoring their professional obligations to turn over materials that the defense could use to counter the charges.
Agent Joy, who still works for the bureau, took the unusual step of asking the government for official protection as a whistle-blower. His 10-page affidavit has become an important part of the collapse of the case.