This case is being heard in the Court of Claims in the City of New York. The defendant in the case is the State of New York. The claimant of the case is Amine Baba-Ali. The judge overseeing the case is Melvin L. Schweitzer.
The claimant in this case, Amine Baba-Ali was accused and convicted of sexually abusing his four year old daughter. A New York Criminal Lawyer said the allegations included that he sodomized the girl and raped her. He was imprisoned for 783 days on multiple concurrent sentences for these convictions. He was held in a maximum security prison during this time.
His rape conviction was reversed on the grounds of prosecutorial misconduct and ineffective assistance of counsel. When he was going to be re-tried in the matter, the prosecutors found that the only witness in the case had been lying and that there was no credible evidence that the claimant’s daughter had ever been molested in any way. They dismissed the indictment against the claimant.
The claimant has begun this action against the state for an unjust conviction.
The defendant has moved to dismiss the case for failing to state a cause of action. The claimant cross motioned for a summary judgment in the case. The Second Department of the Appellate Division granted a summary judgment to the claimant and found the state liable.
It is to be noted that this is the first time that an unjust conviction statute was found by the Appellate Division on a motion record that the defendant had fully satisfied all of the requirements of the statute, including that he was innocent.
The original case started during a heated divorce battle regarding custody of their daughter. A Brooklyn Criminal Lawyer said the claimant was accused by his now ex-wife of raping and abusing his daughter. The claimant was convicted of the crimes as listed above by a judge in the Supreme Court.
The reversal in the case was based on the grounds that the judgment was procured by misconduct of the prosecution that was equivalent to fraud. This withholding of evidence by the prosecution that would have exonerated the claimant is a fraudulent act and involves bad faith and dishonesty. In addition, during the dismissal case the claimant also provided new medical evidence in the case. At the original trial his daughter did not implicate him and the pediatrician who examined her found that there was no evidence to show that she had been sexually abused in any way.
Damages Trial and Verdict
The claimant has presented evidence to the court that document his lost wages, the conditions of his time in prison, the emotional, social, and mental impact the conviction took on him, the effects the incarceration had on his life, and a loss of a relationship with his daughter.
As the defendant has already been found liable, the amount of damages is to be determined by the court. The amount will be based on the circumstances of the individual and the course of his imprisonment.
After reviewing all of the facts of the case the court is awarding the claimant $343,428 for loss of wages and non pecuniary damages of $1,750,000. The total amount awarded to the claimant is $2,093,428.
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