Appeals court orders new trial for Brooklyn rabbi


NEW YORK, April 27 (Reuters) – A Brooklyn rabbi convicted of sex abuse will get a new trial, after a New York appeals court ruled that prosecutors failed to promptly hand over a detective’s notes about an alleged bribery attempt.

The Appellate Division, Second Department, held that Rabbi Baruch Lebovits was “substantially prejudice(d)” by prosecutors’ mid-trial disclosure of a detective’s handwritten notes detailing a conversation in which the alleged sex-abuse victim said he was offered a bribe by a key defense witness in exchange for his silence.

“The untimely disclosure of the interview notes precluded the defense from fully and adequately preparing for cross-examination and set a trap for the defendant which had already sprung at the time the notes were finally furnished,” the court wrote in a unanimous order released last week.

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