Law & Order (1990–2010)
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A judge throws out all of the prosecution's key evidence and dismisses murder charges against a wealthy defendant. District Attorney Adam Schiff suspects that the judge, an old friend, may be on the take.


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Rey Curtis
Anita Van Buren
Claire Kincaid
Judge Edgar Hynes
Judge Joseph Rivera
Mr. Ricardi
Mr. Kaiser
Elaine Nicodos
Celia Gaston (as Brettanya Friese)
Rebecca Waxman ...
Gail Russell


Detectives Briscoe and Logan investigate multiple deaths when three people at a magazine office are shot at work. The magazine's editor, Eddie Nicodos, came from a rich family whose family business was food distribution. They check into ex-employees and a computer game developer who was suing the magazine over a bad review. When they learn that Eddie and his brother Peter had been arguing over the lawsuit. ADA McCoy's biggest challenge is the presiding judge, Edgar Hynes, who seems to go out of his way to rule against the prosecution. After the prosecution rests its case, the judge grants the defense request to dismiss the case. Adam Schiff knows Hynes quite well and when he hears that his old friend is going through a divorce, he begins to suspect corruption. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

1 November 1995 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Loosely based on the case of Harry "The Hook" Aleman. Harry Aleman was a Chicago mobster and one of the most feared mob enforcers during the 1970's in Chicago, he was suspected of murdering dozens of people. He is also famous for being the first American to be legally retried for murder after being acquitted for that same murder. He was arrested and tried for murdering the head of a trucking labor union who was causing trouble for the crime syndicate he worked for. The Chicago Circuit Court was extremely corrupt at the time, with a number of judges being on the mob's payroll. After being arrested and charged with first degree murder Aleman requested a bench trial (a trial where the verdict is decided by a judge instead of a jury) and arranged to have the judge presiding over his case paid in exchange for acquitting him of all charges. During the 1980's the FBI and the US Attorney's office began a thorough investigation into the rampant corruption in the Chicago Circuit Court system. This investigation revealed that the judge in Alman's case had been bribed to find him not guilty, upon learning of the investigation the judge committed suicide. In 1993 Alman was re-indited on the murder charges he faced back in the 1970's, his lawyer argued that the double jeopardy clause prevented his client from being retried for the same crime. The case went before the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit who ruled that because the outcome of the original trial was determined before it even began, Mr. Aleman "was never truly in jeopardy since his acquittal was guaranteed by the bribe he paid to the judge". As such double jeopardy didn't apply to this case since technically it never attached to the case to begin with. At his second trial in 1997 Aleman was found guilty on all counts and sentenced to 300 years in prison. This case was historic since Aleman was the first American to be retried for murder following a fraudulent first trial. See more »


At the beginning 0f the interrogation scene between DA Schiff and Judge Hynes, you can see Hynes' mouth moving in the bottom right corner of the mirror towards the end of the shot, even though neither men are speaking. You can see that he says "Adam" (Schiff's first name), which he is then seen and heard to be saying in the shot that immediately follows. See more »


Peter Nicodos: But I'm innocent. I didn't kill anybody.
ADA Jack McCoy: You've already learned the Rikers Island theme song. Good for you.
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User Reviews

Interesting story, and a few minutes of superb drama
4 January 2017 | by See all my reviews

Fans of Adam Schiff (Steven Hill) will appreciate this episode. He gets to shine in 2 relatively short scenes, but they are two of my favorite scenes out of the entire 20 years of this superb show.

Whilst in the police interrogation room, Schiff gets to crack open, and close, the prosecution with his powerful, confident, yet typically laid back approach to being D.A.

At the end of the episode we learn the repercussions of his successful interrogation, and again feel the sadness associated with the results from doing the right thing.

Overall this is an above average episode of L&O, but Hill knocks it out of the park to make it a great one.

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