Tuesday, July 30, 2013

D.A. Hynes conduct raises Questions of Professional Conduct

NY Times   In search of love and votes, Charles J. Hynes, the Brooklyn district attorney, cannot seem to stop tripping over himself. 

Last week, he went on a television and radio show for the Orthodox Jewish community and denounced Sam Kellner. Bearded and intense, a bubbling fountain of words, Mr. Kellner is one of the rare few in the Hasidic community who spoke publicly about the plague of child sexual abuse. He helped the district attorney build cases against prominent Hasidic leaders, including a man accused of molesting Mr. Kellner’s own 16-year-old son. 

Or at least Mr. Kellner spoke until Brooklyn prosecutors turned around two years ago and charged him with trying to extort his son’s accused abuser, the Satmar cantor Baruch Lebovits.
The weakness of the case against Mr. Kellner is difficult to overstate. On Monday in State Supreme Court, Mr. Hynes’s prosecutors pleaded for more time to reinvestigate their rapidly disintegrating case. 

None of which appeared to have given pause to Mr. Hynes. “I believe there was a substantial effort by Mr. Kellner to gain money by making up stories,” he told the host of the program, Zev Brenner, last week. “I think we have a substantial case.” 

It appears Mr. Hynes, who often emphasizes the management experience he has accumulated over many decades, has violated the state’s rules of professional conduct, which prohibit prosecutors from offering “any opinion as to the guilt or innocence of a suspect” in a criminal matter.[...]

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