On June 18, NYCLA joined with the Bronx, Kings, Richmond and Queens County Bar Associations in filing a civil action in New York State Supreme Court alleging that recent attempts by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the City of New York and the Criminal Justice Coordinator to overturn the City's indigent defense system are unconstitutional under the New York and United States Constitutions.
This most recent action follows the filing of an Article 78 proceeding on June 2 to challenge the City's unilateral overturning of the indigent defense system operated for more than 40 years through a joint plan among the City and County Bars.
The June 18 complaint alleges that the City's actions threaten to undermine indigent defendants' already limited access to meaningful and effective representation, and that the actions violate the guarantees of access to counsel, due process, equal protection and separation of powers. The complaint seeks to halt the City's contract procurement process and preserve the status quo unless and until the City reaches an agreement with the County Bars that preserves indigent defendants' access to adequate legal counsel.
To read the June 18 release about the filing of the civil action, click here: https://www.nycla.org/siteFiles/News/News131_0.pdf