Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Prosecutors Want FBI Agent's Defense Attorney Booted

Rogue FBI agent Lindley DeVecchio could be forced to find another lawyer on the eve of his blockbuster murder trial if Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes gets his way.

Prosecutors yesterday asked a judge to boot defense lawyer Douglas Grover from the case so they could call him as a witness against his own client.

"I want to put Mr. Grover on the stand," lead prosecutor Michael Vecchione told state Supreme Court Justice Gustin Reichbach. Vecchione said he wanted Grover out because of a meeting the defense lawyer had years ago with a star prosecution witness.

DeVecchio, 66, was indicted last year for allegedly helping mobster Gregory Scarpa Sr. carry out four murders in the 1980s and '90s.

Scarpa, who has since died, was an FBI informer. Fall Discounts from The Wine MessengerHis ex-girlfriend Linda Schiro is the star witness who met with Grover 15 years ago during a Justice Department probe that cleared DeVecchio.

"Their point is that Schiro is a blatant liar," said Vecchione, adding that Grover met with Schiro and helped influence her.

Grover scoffed at the allegation. He called it tit-for-tat because he had successfully forced two prosecutors off the case.

"Removal of counsel on the eve of trial ... the prejudice would be extreme," said Reichbach, who reserved decision.

The trial is scheduled to get underway next month.

Thanks to Scott Shifrel


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