The Appeals Bureau is responsible for handling all appeals and motion practice in the Appellate Division, the Appellate Term, and the New York Court of Appeals, as well as all federal habeas corpus litigation in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The Bureau also litigates the vast majority of post-judgment motions filed in Supreme Court and Criminal Court. In addition, the Bureau represents the Office in all Mental Hygiene Law proceedings pursuant to CPL § 330.20, litigating issues concerning defendants who have been found not responsible of a crime because of a mental disease or defect after a plea or trial. The Bureau also assists the Office regarding legal questions, and provides second seating on complex trials.
Civil Litigation Bureau
The Civil Litigation Bureau is comprised of several parts, including a Subpoena Compliance Unit, the Asset Forfeiture Unit, the Freedom of Information Law Unit, the Property Release Unit, and the Eviction Unit. The Subpoena Compliance and Freedom of Information Law Units are designed to respond to lawful requests made to the office by citizens and others. The Property Release Unit is charged with responding in a timely manner to requests by defendants and their counsel for a written release form addressed to the Police Department regarding their property or, in the alternative, an explanation of the status of their request. The Assistant District Attorneys in the Eviction Unit help to keep tenants and homeowners from suffering at the hands of neighbors who are engaging in illegal trades like drug-dealing. Similarly, the Assistant District Attorneys in the Asset Forfeiture Unit use the state civil procedure laws and some federal statutes to help ensure that criminals do not profit from their ill-gotten gains or from the instrumentalities of their crimes.
Professional Responsibility Bureau
The Professional Responsibility Bureau is comprised of: Best Practices Committee and an Ethics Committee.
Best Practices Committee
The Best Practices Committee is comprised of a Chair and members who keep abreast of legal developments, attend meetings of the District Attorneys Association and similar organizations, and attend seminars when cutting-edge legal topics are discussed. They meet periodically to share recent developments in criminal law practice and procedures. This Committee also is responsible for the review and approval of the Litigation Training Unit curriculum.
The Ethics Committee is tasked with the responsibility of considering complaints against Assistant District Attorneys, whether the matter emanates from a defendant, civilian, police officer, defense attorney, or a judge.
Discovery Compliance Bureau
This Bureau maintains the Office’s databases of law enforcement accountability materials, and assumes responsibility for broader discovery compliance issues, to ensure we meet criminal justice reform obligations
Litigation Training Bureau
The Litigation Training Bureau offers continuing legal education in ethics, case management, criminal law and procedure, skills and professionalism. The Director of the Litigation Training Unit develops courses for Assistant District Attorneys at various levels of their career.
Conviction Integrity Bureau
The Conviction Integrity Bureau is dedicated to improving the quality and integrity of prosecutions throughout Bronx County. This unit has two important functions. First, it reviews post-judgment claims of actual innocence and wrongful conviction in our most serious cases. The review is generally fact-based and extra-judicial. When appropriate, it thoroughly reinvestigates a case. Second, the Conviction Integrity Unit works closely with Executive Staff, Trial Division Supervisors, the Litigation Training Unit, and the Best Practices Committee, to help implement and follow best practices in the current prosecution of cases, and to ensure compliance with all legal and ethical obligations.