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Daniel Bogden Comments on Obscenity Case/Firing

Daniel Bogden and eight other former U.S. attorneys were vindicated recently when the Justice Department’s inspector general concluded that their 2006 firings were arbitrary and recommended appointment of a special prosecutor. Bogden, who is now practicing law in Reno, shared his thoughts about the internal investigation with the Las Vegas Sun.

What’s your opinion of the inspector general’s report?

It really doesn’t give us a final answer as to who put us on the (firing) list and their reasons for it. Having spent so much time with the Department of Justice and being public servants for so long, I think we deserve an answer as to why we were forced to step down.

Do you think a special prosecutor will be able to unlock the mystery?

We can remain somewhat optimistic, but I’m not convinced that we will ever get the answers we’re seeking. It all depends on what kind of authority the special prosecutor gets. Right now, it’s unclear what that authority will be. Everyone is waiting to see what steps will be taken.

The inspector general concluded that you likely were let go because you failed to prosecute an obscenity case that was important to the department’s porn czar. Do you believe that?

I’m fairly certain that wasn’t the reason. It seems extraordinary that a single adult obscenity case would cost me my position as United States attorney. At the time, we had a number of things going on in the office and had limited resources. I never received any calls from anyone that I wasn’t addressing the priorities of the president or the attorney general.

What do you think happened?

I have a much better idea now, and I have my suspicions. But I don’t want to talk about it. Now that there’s a special prosecutor, this thing is in an investigative stage.

You wanted to be reinstated as U.S. attorney here, but that didn’t occur. How do you feel about that?

I’m disappointed. But those who used their positions against us inappropriately are gone now. Hopefully, there’s a lesson here for the future so that this won’t happen again.

How has life been for you in private practice?

It’s been a learning curve. I’m pretty much doing civil matters, which is different for me because I spent a career handling criminal matters. It’s been very challenging.

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