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United States v. Cutler

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
58 F.3d 825 (1995)


Bruce Cutler (defendant) was the attorney representing accused mob-boss John Gotti. After the United States Attorney held a press conference to discuss the strength of the government’s case and call Gotti a “murderer, not a folk hero,” Cutler gave a series of statements and interviews to the press defending Gotti and criticizing the government. The trial judge, I. Leo Glasser, made several attempts to get Cutler to comply with Local Rule 7, which forbids attorneys from making statements reasonably likely to be published if it is probable that those statements will prejudice ongoing criminal litigation. When Cutler continued to give interviews, Judge Glasser ordered Cutler to show cause why the court should not find him in criminal contempt. At trial, Cutler claimed that Local Rule 7 violated his constitutional right to freedom of speech. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York found Cutler guilty, and Cutler appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

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Holding and Reasoning (McLaughlin, J.)

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