February 1954

EMPLOYMENT - ATTORNEY RECEIVING INFORMATION AS SPECIAL PROSECUTOR ACTING AS DEFENSE COUNSEL - An attorney, whose employment was sought as special prosecutor by the prosecuting witness in a criminal case, is prohibited from later accepting employment as defense counsel in the same case.

Canon 6. 


The prosecutrix in a statutory rape case sought to employ a member of the Bar as special prosecutor.  The prosecutrix related to the attorney her version of the facts of the case, and the attorney set a fee for his services as special prosecutor.  The father of prosecutrix advised the attorney he was unable to pay this fee, and no further conversation was had between them.  Subsequently, the defendant in the case offered to employ this attorney as defense counsel.  Would it violate the Canons of Ethics for the attorney to accept employment as defense counsel under these circumstances?


The committee is of the opinion that the acceptance of employment to represent the defendant under the facts submitted would be in violation of No. 6. (8-0)