Leon R. Koziol, J.D.
Founder and president
Citizen Commission Against Corruption. Org
Former New York criminal trial attorney
Nearly every legal expert, including veteran defense attorneys in lower Manhattan, have now weighed in on the Donald Trump indictment unsealed yesterday during a widely awaited arraignment. In a “historic” display of self-serving politics, New York D.A. Alvin Bragg unveiled his 34 felony counts connected to a pair of women seeking to exploit long ago sexual affairs against a presidential candidate.
This so-called indictment is destined for an early dismissal based on a treasure trove of defects, jurisdictional, procedural and otherwise, featuring a filing that is clearly insufficient on its face. But this does not end the consequences. Bragg must be held personally accountable along with his co-conspirators for an abuse of our justice system that is more precedent-setting than the case itself.
For starters, who is going to pay for all this? The arraignment alone, a mere formality in the scheme of criminal litigation, has cost taxpayers millions of dollars ranging from security to facilitation. The FDR highway along Manhattan’s east side was evacuated simply to provide a safe escort from Trump Tower to the courthouse.
Beyond the “historic” costs, a needless risk to an army of law enforcement, court security and secret service was created whose resources are better spent on the violent crimes that have been growing rampant in recent years in that city. This circus show has turned into one monumental hypocrisy.
Pre-arraignment analyses made in recent posts here at http://www.leonkoziol.com have now been validated. As predicted, a gag order was sought by Manhattan D.A. Alvin Bragg but denied by Judge Juan Merchan with cautionary comments.
For the defense part, no motion for recusal or venue change was made. However, if Judge Merchan is truly impartial, he will not turn a blind eye to Alvin Bragg’s abuses. At a minimum, he will issue a severe reprimand and refer the entire matter to the First Department ethics committee. This clown display was otherwise uneventful. The former president and front running candidate entered pleas of Not Guilty.
A motion date was set for August and a pretrial hearing for December 4, 2023. Both the D.A. and Trump lawyer, Joe Tacopina, conducted news conferences afterward while the accused returned to Mar-a-Lago. His reaction at a rally there that evening was predictable and highly convincing, focused on the weaponization of our justice system.
These counts can be boiled down to only a few. They were packaged together to bolster Bragg’s public standing. Resort to federal court may now be necessitated on grounds that a local D.A. has no jurisdiction to prosecute a federal election crime to rehabilitate state misdemeanors infected by a long expired 2-year statute of limitations.
In the end, even Trump adversaries expressed sympathy for the climaxing persecution. On a national scale it mirrors mine as a former office holder and civil rights attorney. How ironic it is to see issues in these proceedings already litigated in my 10-year ordeal as an attorney whistleblower who took a conscientious stand against his profession for its exploitation of parents and children in New York’s family courts.
This horrific ordeal is detailed in a 13-page Law Review and News Alert released here on March 17, 2023 and 2021 memoir, Whistleblower in Paris.