The lead lawyer for a hip-hop mogul accused of operating a $10-million-a-year cocaine operation agreed on Friday to relinquish any trial role. Eastern District prosecutors had moved to disqualify Jeffrey H. Lichtman on the ground that he would be a fact witness to a prison meeting with a confidential witness whom his client, James Rosemond, is seeking to block from testifying (NYLJ, July 13).

In a letter to Eastern District Judge John Gleeson, who is presiding over the drug-trafficking case against Mr. Rosemond, lawyer Marc Fernich said that his co-counsel, Mr. Lichtman, would only operate in “a non-trial capacity” and that the legal team would move “quickly” to hire new lead counsel. Mr. Rosemond is also accused of obstruction of justice in seeking to block the jailed member of his alleged drug operation from testifying against him.

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