Federal court ruling opens possibility of new look at infamous NY child molestation case

Aug 16th, 2010 | By usnews | Category: U.S.

GARDEN CITY, N.Y. –  A New York man who’s tried for years to take back his guilty plea in a notorious child molestation case has lost a fight in federal court.

But Jesse Friedman won a huge moral victory Monday when judges ruled prosecutors should consider reopening their investigation.

The federal appeals court denied Friedman’s request to withdraw his guilty plea but criticized police, prosecutors and the trial judge in the 1988 case. The judges cited “a reasonable likelihood” of a wrongful conviction.

A teenage Friedman and his father pleaded guilty to molesting children during computer classes in the basement of their home in Great Neck, on Long Island. He has since insisted he was coerced into making the plea.

The case was profiled in the Academy Award-nominated 2003 documentary “Capturing the Friedmans.”

Prosecutors say they’re reviewing the ruling.

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