The story of former Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Convertino seems destined for the big screen. With the government’s war on terrorism as the backdrop, it features head-spinning twists and wrinkles that continue to unfold. The essential plot: In 2003 Convertino became the first prosecutor to win post-9/11 convictions on terrorism-related charges. Three years later, after a federal judge dismissed the convictions, the government took the rare step of indicting Convertino for his handling of the very same case for which he was once celebrated.
For Convertino the story appears to be heading toward a happy ending. Last fall a jury acquitted him of criminal charges that he obstructed justice by withholding evidence from defendants in the terrorism case. And he’s pursuing a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice, alleging that government officials leaked the identity of a confidential informant and details about an investigation to a reporter. Convertino says the leak was retribution for his complaining to a senator about the feds’ shoddy efforts to prosecute terrorists.
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