Some good news -- and some bad news.
The good news: I won my Article 78 lawsuit against Brooklyn D.A. Charles Hynes; Supreme Court, Kings County has ordered his office to provide me with copies of all documents relating to the extradition of Avrohom Mondrowitz since September 1993 to the present in response to my October 207 FOIL request.
The bad news: his office is determined to fight on to keep this information out of public hands.
As you know, I've been fighting to get Avrohom Mondrowitz finally tried for his heinous crimes against children for years, which has meant fighting Orthodox rabbis -- and Hynes, who works so closely with them -- all the way.
I've now got the court's decision from the mail. As I wrote above, I won my lawsuit against Hynes' office, which had refused to answer my FOIL request seeking information about the attempted extradition of Mondrowitz (which the D.A. renewed under pressure in October 2007).
As you probably know, the D.A. has been publicly claiming to have been pressing for Mondrowitz's extradition all along, and in fact to have persuaded the State Dept. to have rewritten its extradition treaty with Israel for the purpose of bringing Mondrowitz back. My FOIL request (made over two years ago) was intended primarily to get the evidence to show whether those claims are true or false. Did the D.A. seek Mondrowitz's extradition immediately after the new treaty went into effect (as he claims) or only when the pressure on him built up 9 months later? Did he actually encourage the State Dept. to secure a different extradition treaty to bring Mondrowitz within reach (as he claims) or is lying about that to conceal his inaction?
Because Hynes' office (after a full year of prevarications and excuses) refused to turn over a single document to me, claiming a FOIL exemption, I was forced to make first an administrative appeal and then to file a lawsuit in May of this year -- all on my own time and at my own expense, by the way. Justice David Vaughan of Supreme Court, Kings County has ruled in my favor, ordering the D.A. to turn over to me all extradition-related documents about Mondrowitz from September 1993 to the present.
Unfortunately, the office has informed me that they will file a motion to reargue AND a notice of appeal. This means that Hynes is ready to tie up the resources of his office (and taxpayer money) to try to keep the public from knowing his real record in the Mondrowitz case.
I think that's something the public ought to know -- especially since he's been claiming to have such a good record on this case, and on child sex abuse prosecutions in the Orthodox community generally.
Here is the judge's decision as a PDF file: