In 1993, I was trying a federal case in the Easten District of New York before a visiting judge from San Francisco, California. On the first day of trial, the judge was limiting my cross-examination of a Government witness. The judge announced his rule of cross-examination-- that I "could only ask the same questions that were asked by the Government on direct." I tried to artfully get around this ruling, but the judge ruled I was violating it and held me in contempt. The trial lasted three weeks and during the remainder of the trial, the judge relaxed his cross-examination rule and I was permitted to properly represent my client.
At the end of the trial, I moved for the judge to vacate the contempt finding. The judge said in substance I was a great lawyer and knew exactly what I was doing that first day of trial--ignoring his ruling-- but that he would vacate the contempt if I made a five thousand dollar donation to Brooklyn Law School.
I had been trying cases for 26 years (many of them high profile) and believed that a lawyer should not be limited in cross-examination as this judge had originally ruled. So I did not make the donation, but spent far more in defending my and all lawyers' right to properly cross-examine a witness.
I opened my own law firm in 1968 and built a bustling criminal defense practice in New York.
I have advocated on behalf of hundreds of clients in federal and state cases, and have appeared before the Federal District Courts of New York, California, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Maryland, Florida, and Louisiana. I have represented people from all walks of life, ranging from public officials and professionals such as doctors, lawyers, and accountants, to those accused of street crimes including murder and drug conspiracies. I have tried over 30 murder cases to verdict with greater than 50% of them ending in acquittals, including cases involving video-taped confessions. I have been involved in a number of high profile cases, including a firefighter who was accused of the death of a motorist while driving a fire engine to lunch and an acquittal on all counts for a woman charged with arson and double homicide in Queens County, New York. See "Cases" for some of the other high profile cases I have tried.
Since moving my practice to Madison Avenue in New York City, I have defended primarily white collar cases, including Medicaid fraud cases. However, I still enjoy defending all types of street crimes in the state courts.
Prior to entering private practice, I began my career as an attorney for the estate tax division of the IRS. In 1965 I joined the criminal court branch of the Legal Aid Society of New York, around the time it was designated by the City of New York to be the primary provider of criminal defense representation for the city.
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This lawyer was disciplined by a state licensing authority in 1995.
Censured issued in NY, 1995
updated on 06/26/2017
When an attorney is censured it means he or she did something wrong but may still practice law. Typically in this case the lawyer's poor behavior is exposed to the public in hopes that he or she will not repeat the behavior.