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The Defense is Ready by Leslie Abramson

The Defense is Ready

by Leslie Abramson

Other authors: Richard Flaste (Author)

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Leslie Abramson is a prominent defense attorney who achieved national attention through her defense in the Eric and Lyle Menendez murder trial. She also has served as a TV commentator on NBC’s Nightline and Court TV, including during the OJ Simpson murder trial.

In “The Defense is Ready”, Ms Abramson offers a candid and passionate memoir of her life and career, from childhood through law school, to an early position in the LA Public Defender’s Office, to her position as a defense attorney. Among the legal cases she recounts are a gang slaying, abused wives forced to defend themselves against their husbands, and a brutal mass murder in a local restaurant. Yet another case involved a Pakistani physician inexplicably charged with having murdered and dismembered his own son; through her efforts, he was entirely exonerated.

In Ms Abramson’s account, miscreants lie on both sides of the legal system; in fact, she describes rogue cops, irresponsible lawyers, vicious prison guards, and judges who range from to incompetent to vindictive. She strongly refutes the notion that those of her clients who might be guilty do not deserve a defense. She also offers a powerful plea for a more humane legal system and society, one that recognizes that defendants often are “screw-ups” (her term) who lack the intelligence and resources to stay on the right side of the law.

Overall, “The Defense is Ready” is an entertaining glimpse into the legal system through some particularly reprehensible cases. The subjective nature of Ms Abramson’s account becomes evident from her description of the Menendez murder trial. One would not realize from her version the strong evidence that the young men killed their parents for financial gain, and the questionable nature of their belated claims of sexual abuse. The uninformed reader is in little position to assess her angry criticisms of the judge, or her casual dismissal of the serious charges that she had withheld damaging evidence. It's worth nothing that the Menendez verdict was upheld on appeal, and that while Abramson was not prosecuted, the charges against her did lead to an 11 month investigation.

While I greatly enjoyed reading this work (and think I'd want Ms Abramson on my side in a court of law), it is best viewed not as a dispassionate, objective account, but as a work of advocacy, if not self- justification. ( )
7 vote danielx | Jan 5, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Leslie Abramsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Flaste, RichardAuthorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 068481403X, Hardcover)

The lawyer who defended Erik and Lyle Menendez in their first trial describes some of her many other high-profile cases, including the Bob's Big Boy murders and the Chinatown case in which her investigation led to the truth about the crime. 150,000 first printing. Tour.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:30 -0400)

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