Chris Cuomo was joined Wednesday on Cuomo Prime Time by Jennifer Bonjean, an attorney for Bill Cosby, just hours after was released from prison. Earlier in the day, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court vacated Cosby’s sexual assault conviction on procedural grounds, ruling that a deposition Cosby gave for a civil suit in 2005, in which he incriminated himself, was improperly used by prosecutors in the 2018 criminal trial.
“These are constitutional safeguards,” Bonjean said. “This isn’t just a matter of technicalities. We are talking about major constitutional principles on which our system rests, and that's why the remedy was a strong one.”
In 2005, former Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce Castor came to the conclusion that there was not enough evidence to arrest and convict Cosby, who was accused of sexual assault by former Temple University employee Andrea Constand. Castor promised Cosby he would not be tried if he gave up his 5th Amendment rights and took part in a deposition. The purpose was to give Constand’s attorney’s enough evidence for a successful civil suit, which was ultimately the case. In the deposition, Cosby admitted to obtaining Quaaludes for the purpose of sexually assaulting women.
There has been widespread outrage since Cosby’s release, but Bonjean said that anger should be aimed directly at the prosecutors.
“There had been an agreement, and a lot of this energy, this angry energy should really be directed at the prosecutors because this is a case about prosecutorial misconduct,” Bonjean said. “You may take issue with Mr. Castor for having made the agreement in the first place, and you should also take issue with the prosecutors who refused to honor that agreement.”
Cuomo asked Bonjean if it bothers her at all that Cosby admitted guilt, and there are more than 60 accusers, but he will no longer be punished for his actions. Bonjean said it does not because she feels the defense did its job in defending Cosby’s constitutional rights.
“My job is a defense attorney. I'm very proud of the work we did in upholding the constitution,” Bonjean responded. “And I'm very proud that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court was not influenced by the court of public opinion. So in that regard, it does not bother me in the slightest.”
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