Law: Whose Trial Is It Anyway?

Defense lawyers raise hackles by attacking victims and prosecutors

Because Marla Hanson demanded from her landlord the return of a security deposit on her rented apartment and resisted his advances, he dispatched two men last June to slash her face with a razor. The instantly notorious New York City attack left Hanson with visible scars, but the 25-year-old model says the courtroom assault that followed was worse. At one of the resultant trials, a defense attorney claimed, without producing evidence, that she was helping prosecutors frame the two slashers because they were black. He alleged that she was sexually voracious and "preyed on men." He even confronted Hanson with an...

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