Wrongful Convictions

The Firm frequently represents innocent clients who have been wrongly accused and convicted of crimes and served prison terms for offenses they did not commit.  The Firm has expertise in all aspects of wrongful conviction litigation, from motions seeking to vacate a conviction in state court to damages actions in state and federal court seeking compensation after release.  The Firm has obtained multimillion dollar settlements on behalf of wrongfully convicted clients in both civil rights suits brought in federal court and in claims under the Unjust Conviction and Imprisonment Act in the New York Court of Claims.  The Firm’s litigation in this area includes claims alleging police and prosecutorial misconduct, including fabrication of evidence, Brady violations, and malicious prosecution.

For the latest news on ECBA’s wrongful conviction work, click here.

Representative Cases:

  • Vasquez v. City of New York  – Together with Romano & Kuan, PLLC, the Firm successfully litigated and settled state and federal actions on behalf of the widow of a man who was wrongfully convicted of murder and served more than twelve years in prison as an innocent man.  The Firm ultimately recovered $6.7 million on behalf of the estate.
  • People v. Cosme – The Firm successfully obtained the vacatur of two murder convictions and the dismissal of an 18-year-old indictment on behalf of Michael Cosme, who spent 18 years in prison for two murders in which he was not involved.  The firm currently represents Mr. Cosme in multimillion-dollar damages litigation against the City and State of New York seeking compensation for his wrongful incarceration, which resulted from fabrication of testimony and suppression of exculpatory evidence by NYPD detectives.
  • Perez v. City/State of New York – The Firm represents Carlos Perez, Michael Cosme’s former co-defendant, in civil litigation against the City and State of New York.
  • Deacon v. State of New York  – Together with Glenn A. Garber, P.C., the Firm represents Derrick Deacon, who spent 24 years in prison for murder as an innocent man as a result of egregious official misconduct.  After new evidence came to light showing that Mr. Deacon was not the perpetrator, he was granted a retrial and acquitted in minutes.  The Firm represents Mr. Deacon in litigation against both the City and State in federal court and in the New York Court of Claims, respectively.
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