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BOSTON � The Chief Judge of the U.S. District of Massachusetts recently sent a letter to Attorney General Michael Mukasey criticizing the U.S. Department of Justice’s discipline of a Massachusetts’ prosecutor and its “failure to be candid and consistent with the court” in Massachusetts. Chief Judge Mark Wolf’s letter was filed on Jan. 4 in two cases where the alleged misconduct led to the two decisions overturning the wrongful convictions of alleged mobsters. Barone v. USA, No. 98-11104 (D.Mass.) Ferrara v. USA, No. 00-11693 (D.Mass.) Wolf, who had sent Mukasey’s predecessor Alberto Gonzales previous letters about the ongoing controversy, reiterated and strengthened his criticism. In his six-page missive, Wolf wrote that the DOJ’s inadequate response to prosecutor Jeffrey Auerhahn’s alleged misconduct involving Auerhahn’s failure to disclose evidence forced him to release two mobsters from prison. Wolf wrote that the alleged mob members’ due process rights were violated “when they were not provided important evidence negating their guilt.” Wolf went on to criticize a “secret, written reprimand” of Auerhahn by Michael Sullivan, the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts in November 2006. Wolf has also started disciplinary proceedings in U.S. District court against Auerhahn. Auerhahn’s lawyer, Arnold Rosenfeld, a Boston of counsel with Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Preston Gates Ellis, could not immediately be reached for comment. In an October 2007 letter to Wolf, Associate Deputy Attorney General David Margolis said the reprimand was within the range of sanctions allowed by the department’s Office of Professional Responsibility. “The department’s performance in the Auerhahn matter raises serious questions about whether judges should continue to rely upon the department to investigate and sanction misconduct by federal prosecutors,” Wolf wrote. Wolf also said the DOJ “has repeatedly taken inconsistent positions” in prominent criminal and civil cases involving misconduct by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. “We will review the letter and respond to Chief Judge Wolf,” said justice department spokesman Peter Carr, in a statement. A spokeswoman for Sullivan also said “the material is being reviewed” by his office. Auerhahn works in the U.S. attorney’s office in the antiterrorism unit.

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