DOJ Attorney Who Helped Prosecute Stevens Dies in Apparent Suicide

Posted September 27, 2010 at 12:51pm

A Justice Department attorney who was part of the team that bungled the prosecution of Sen. Ted Stevens has apparently committed suicide.

Nicholas Marsh helped argue the corruption case against Stevens before U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan. In October 2008, a jury found Stevens guilty of seven counts of failing to report $250,000 in gifts from Alaska oil company executive Bill Allen and other friends. But Sullivan vacated the verdict the following April, declaring that the prosecution had mishandled evidence and hid material that could have been helpful to the defense. Stevens died in August when a plane he was riding in crashed in Alaska.

Sullivan launched an independent investigation of the prosecution team, with an eye toward possible criminal contempt charges.

The website Main Justice quoted Marsh’s lawyer Robert Luskin as saying Monday, “Sadly, it is true. We understand that Nick took his own life. … It’s a terrible tragedy. It’s particularly sad because I am sure that, at the end of the day, he would have been completely exonerated.” The website said Marsh was 37.

Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer of the Criminal Division said in a statement Monday: “Our deepest sympathies go out to Nick’s family and friends on this sad day. The Department of Justice is a community, and today our community is mourning the loss of this dedicated young attorney.”