A fascinating, unprecedented plunge into New York City's federal court system--a world of organized crime, terrorism, drug trafficking, and Wall Street criminality--and a revelatory look at how our justice system, and the pursuit of justice, really works.
The Southern and Eastern District Courts of New York are proving grounds for ambitious prosecutors who turn their service in government into power, position, and, in some cases, celebrity; these attorneys don't hope for victory in the courtroom, they expect it. In The Districts, Johnny Dwyer takes a comprehensive look at these two epicenters of power in our justice system, exposing the incentives that drive how America chooses to punish crime and what those choices reveal about our politics and our society. Dwyer takes us not just into the courtrooms but also into the lives of those who enter through their doors: the judges and defendants, prosecutors and defense counsels, winners and losers. Brimming with detail and drama, The Districts illuminates the meaning of intent, of reasonable doubt, of deception, and--perhaps most important--of justice
About the Author
JOHNNY DWYER is a reporter living in New York City and the author of American Warlord. He has written for Esquire, The Guardian, Rolling Stone, VICE, and other publications
“If the courtroom is a theater, then The Districts is a backstage tour. In this magisterial anatomy of our criminal justice system, Johnny Dwyer punctures the dispassionate edifice of the institutions that administer criminal law to reveal the rousing and often messy human drama behind them. In a series of unforgettable stories about the lawyers, litigants and judges who face off in our federal courts, told in the kind of pointillist detail that can only come from years of hanging around the courthouse and doing old-school shoe-leather reporting, Dwyer presents a vivid tapestry of ambition, crime, punishment, and impunity.”
—Patrick Radden Keefe, author of Say Nothing
"Illuminating... Dwyer skillfully explains complex federal statutes, such as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and traces shifting definitions of what constitutes criminal conduct in insider trading cases. Ultimately, he leaves it up to readers to decide whether justice is being served, but his balanced, sympathetic account demystifies and humanizes the criminal justice system."
"This well-documented, timely book will hold readers' attention."