Giordano contends lawyer botched child sex case - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Giordano contends lawyer botched child sex case

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BRIDGEPORT, CT (WFSB/AP) -

A lawyer for Phillip Giordano has asked a federal judge for another chance to overturn the former Waterbury mayor's federal conviction on child sex charges.

This is Giordano's third attempt to overturn his conviction, and he's now arguing that his previous attorney, Andrew Bowman, of Westport, didn't properly represent him.

Bloomfield attorney Aaron Romano is now representing him.

Giordano, a Republican who lost the 2000 election for U.S. Senate to Sen. Joe Lieberman, is serving a 37-year sentence on federal charges, including violating the civil rights of two girls ages 8 and 10.

The federal investigation revealed that the girls' mother, who was a prostitute, arranged the meetings with the mayor, with some of them occurring in his office.

A hearing for Giordano was held in U.S. District Court on Monday.

Eyewitness News was On Your Side asked how someone convicted on so much evidence including federal wire taps could be allowed to get a new trial.

"Well that argument can be made he is guilty of the abuse. The question before the jury in federal case: was he guilty of acting under color of law meaning is it his position as mayor that allowed him to partake in the alleged abuse?" said attorney Naomi Fretterman.

Romano said Bowman failed to access information that would have shown there was a history of the children being used in prostitution and that the crime was not triggered solely by the fact Giordano was mayor.

"If that lawyer in any way, shape or form neglected to investigate and you don't have fair trial and you're convicted, that conviction is a wrongful conviction," Romano said.

Bowman, who represented Giordano on Monday, told Eyewitness News he did everything he possibly could to defend his client including trying to get those wire taps suppressed.

U.S. District Judge Stefan Underhill must then decide whether to order an evidentiary hearing. He did not set a deadline for making a decision about a new trial, but said he would do it as soon as he can.

Copyright 2013 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.

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