Federal Judge Sanctions New York City For One Lawyer’s “Plethora” Of Objections

By on May 18, 2017
illustration_deposition

May 18, 2017

A federal magistrate judge has sanctioned New York City for the behavior of one of its lawyers, who made more than 600 objections during an eight-hour deposition. The “plethora” of objections – so many that they appeared on 83 percent of the nearly 400 pages of deposition transcript – prevented questions from being answered, and may have influenced the answers of the witness, said U.S. Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollak. “The witness comes to the deposition to testify, not to indulge in a parody of Charlie McCarthy, with lawyers coaching or bending the witness’s words to mold a legally convenient record,” Pollak wrote. The lawyer, Amatullah Booth, an assistant corporation counsel, made the objections last September during the deposition of a New York City police officer accused of making a wrongful arrest. Booth instructed the officer not to answer several times and threatened to walk out of the deposition. “We take quite seriously any finding that calls into question whether one of our lawyers engaged in sanctionable conduct,” said Nick Apolucci, a spokesman for the city law department. “We will review the decision and respond accordingly.”

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ABA Journal

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