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Pants on fire

This is good news for civil libertarians: a police informant who lied when he implicated another was found liable for malicious prosecution after being sued by his "victim." All too frequently, prosecutors rely on questionable informants because they're convenient and helpful, whether or not they're honest. And once a prosecutor does use an informant, there's no incentive to prosecute him for perjury, so the informant has little to lose by lying. This isn't likely to set a significant precedent, because

  1. In order to prevail in such a suit, a plaintiff has to prove to a jury that the defendant knowingly or recklessly lied.
  2. People working as informants are often going to be judgment-proof
Still, it does provide an additional deterrent to lying by informants, and that's a good thing.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 20, 2002 5:13 AM.

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