I sometimes get accused of being a lone nut in my belief that the government should not be in the Barry Bonds prosecution business. But it seems that lots of people — including former prosecutors — think this is a waste:
“It’s a questionable use of resources, especially at a time when the budget is being cut, hiring is frozen and fraudsters are running amok,” said Richard Cutler, a former federal prosecutor who now works in Mountain View for the law firm Dechert L.L.P. “To have two or three attorneys, investigators and paralegals working full time on a perjury case against a baseball player raises questions about the prioritizing of prosecutions.”
The Times notes that multiple other prosecutors from the Northern District of California’s U.S. Attorney’s Office have questioned the wisdom of the prosecution and note that Bonds is unlikely to do much if any time. It’s further noted that the overall BALCO investigation, for all of the years it has dragged on, has resulted in a grand total of 48 months of prison time for the 11 people charged.
Prosecutors make choices every day. I’d be curious to see what sorts of cases this U.S. Attorney’s Office has passed up investigating and prosecuting since 2003 due to lack of manpower, resources or what have you.