Highly Public Prosecutors

In Miami and Washington, big cases mean big headlines

There was a time when federal prosecutors were hardly seen or heard outside a courtroom. But now theatrical press conferences, talk shows and press secretaries are challenging the old-fashioned notion that a prosecutor should stand loftily above politics and never discuss a pending case.

When U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia Jay Stephens finally bagged Mayor Marion Barry, he did not sink back into a gray-flannel cocoon of "no comment." Once an anonymous deputy counsel in the Reagan White House whose only attempt at flash was his vanity license plate WH LAW, Stephens is now a rising Republican star. After...

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