Mahmoud Rabah obtained an amazing victory in an arson case in Queens County. His client had been charged with Arson in the Third Degree and Criminal Mischief in the Second Degree, charges which could have resulted in up to 15 years in jail. Despite overwhelming evidence by the government, including a tape recording of the client admitting to the crime and promising to pay the owner back for the damage and a written confession by the client admitting to wanting revenge against a relative of the owner, as well as four separate witnesses who testified at trial that the client admitted to them that he committed the crime (including a friend of the client), the jury returned a not guilty verdict and Mr. Rabah’s client had all charges dismissed. Mr. Rabah skillfully picked apart the prosecutor’s witnesses and exposed disturbing biases and hostilities and called into question their credibility. He also broke down the police investigation to reveal ineptitude and carelessness. By the time the prosecutor was done with their evidence, it was clear that their burden of proof had not been met and the jury easily returned a verdict of not guilty.
The victory was even more poignant due to the fact that Mr. Rabah’s client had been incarcerated pending the outcome on the case. His client had to endure the rigors of trial while spending his nights at Rikers Island.