In the wake of the charges being dropped agaisnt Ted Stevens, is pressure building on the Justice Department to make a similar decision on behalf of Don Siegelman?
A lawyer for the former Alabama governor — who last week told TPMmuckraker that the misconduct in his own case “dwarf[s]” that in Stevens’ — sent a letter Friday to Attorney General Eric Holder, asking that Holder review the evidence of “serious and pervasive” prosecutorial misconduct in Siegelman’s case.
Siegelman’s lawyer, Vince Kilborn, writes:
I am heartened by your recent decision in another matter to dismiss charges in light of growing evidence of misconduct by the Justice Department. I believe that a similar review of Governor Siegelman’s file … will reveal that key information has been purposefully withheld from my client, that the prosecutors have engaged in far reaching (sic) and that justice demands immediate dismissal of all charges against Governor Siegelman.
The letter lays out several instances in which prosecutors failed to turn over evidence to the defense — the same recurring misstep that prompted Holder to recommend having the charges against Stevens dropped.
Siegelman was convicted in 2006 in connection to his appointment of a campaign contributor to a state board. Though he is now out of jail pending his appeal, the conviction is still standing, despite evidence that the prosecution was politically motivated — a witness has given sworn testimony that Karl Rove was involved — and despite numerous credible allegations of misconduct on the part of prosecutors, jurors, and the judge.
Siegelman attached the letter to Holder to an email sent today to supporters. In the email, Siegelman declares that “Attorney General Holder’s action [on Stevens] gives me hope that justice can be restored and our democracy can be preserved.” And he asks readers to email both Holder and the editorial-page editors of several major newspapers, including the New York Times and the Washington Post, stressing the need for Holder to investigate Siegelman’s case.