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Press Release

United States Attorney Damian Williams Announces The Formation Of New Conviction Integrity Committee

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

“The Conviction Integrity Committee of the Southern District of New York will strive to ensure justice is done in every case both by evaluating claims of factual innocence in our own cases, as well as providing assistance and access to information from SDNY cases that may bear on claims of factual innocence of defendants convicted in other jurisdictions.  This committee will be the first of its kind in this Office and only the second formal federal conviction integrity body nationally. 

The formation of the committee builds on work the Office has done historically to support credible claims of factual innocence in other jurisdictions, both as a resource for defendants and their counsel and as a liaison to the conviction integrity processes in other prosecutors’ offices. The committee institutionalizes that practice and also aims to bring the same level of rigor to review of our own convictions. Our solemn obligation as prosecutors to protect the community and seek justice for victims of crimes requires that we take every step to ensure that the guilty are held responsible and the innocent are set free. 

Though infrequent, wrongful convictions engender mistrust of law enforcement and erode the public’s faith in the fundamental fairness of the criminal justice system.  If the committee’s comprehensive review yields but one remedy of an unjust conviction or results in the freedom of even one wrongly incarcerated, innocent individual, we will consider it a successful endeavor to further the cause of justice for all.  We also hope to leverage the Committee’s work and leadership to ensure the Office’s practices on investigative techniques and disclosure are designed to prevent wrongful convictions.” 

Conviction Integrity Committee


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated October 17, 2022

Press Release Number: 22-324