U.S. District Decide Aileen Cannon’s choice got here after Trump’s authorized workforce and the Division of Justice each endorsed Dearie’s nomination — initially made by Trump — to parse the seized information for doubtlessly privileged materials.
Attorneys and litigants who’ve appeared earlier than Dearie describe him as impartial, thorough and even-handed jurist who’s match to wrangle the dueling sides. As a lot as any decide put on this troublesome place, they are saying he’s as much as the duty.
“He’s one of many few judges who either side wish to seem in entrance of. He’s held within the highest regard by attorneys. He’s somebody who truly listens to the legal professionals and considers what they must say earlier than he decides,” stated Lindsay Gerdes, a former Brooklyn federal prosecutor.
Sean Hecker, an legal professional at Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP who has had a number of instances earlier than Dearie (together with one pending) stated a lot the identical. “He’s independent-minded, extraordinarily good and clever. Laborious to think about a extra certified particular person for this difficult project.”
Dearie is a former U.S. Legal professional for the Japanese District of New York, a job he held from 1982 to 1986. He was chief decide of the Japanese District from 2007 to 2011. He stays an energetic decide on senior standing, that means he has a decreased caseload.
He additionally served on the International Intelligence Surveillance Courtroom for seven years — the place he was one of many judges who signed off warrants the FBI used to surveil 2016 Trump marketing campaign aide Carter Web page in an investigation into Russian election interference.
Federal investigators later decided an FBI lawyer altered an e mail used to help the surveillance software — one thing Trump has used to discredit all the investigation — although a decide on the FBI legal professional’s subsequent felony case acknowledged the applying may need been granted anyhow.
Some paperwork seized at Mar-a-Lago have been marked “FISA,” indicating they relate to intelligence derived from overseas sources, in line with an affidavit within the case.
“He works extremely properly with events, however doesn’t tolerate nonsense,” stated Richard Garbarini of Garbarini Fitzgerald P.C. “He is not going to permit events, or attorneys, to play video games, or play fast-and-loose with the principles.”
Although few, if any, instances will match the stakes and intrigue of the Mar-a-Lago investigation, Dearie does have some high-profile instances below his belt. These embody the corruption trials of a number of officers at FIFA, the worldwide soccer governing physique.
He additionally oversaw a court docket battle within the 2017 New York Metropolis mayoral race. Former New York Metropolis Councilmember Sal Albanese didn’t meet polling and fundraising thresholds to achieve admittance into televised debates, and he sued the town’s Marketing campaign Finance Board searching for an injunction so he might take the stage. However Dearie dominated the finance board’s standards weren’t partisan, subjective or discriminatory.
Albanese didn’t prevail, however he got here away with a optimistic impression of the decide.
“I feel he’s a good man, regardless of my dropping that case. He’s clearly very educated,” he stated in an interview. “His temperament was glorious, and he was considerate. He requested a number of good questions. Very level-headed.”
Prosecutors and legal professionals for Trump every presented Cannon with two options as candidates for the job: Dearie and Paul Huck Jr., a Florida legal professional with vital ties to figures in Trump’s orbit.
The Justice Division proposed Barbara Jones — a former federal decide and Invoice Clinton nominee who has stuffed the identical particular grasp function in three different delicate investigations — and former federal appeals court docket decide Thomas Griffith.
Trump’s workforce objected to each of these picks whereas the DOJ indicated Huck was not acceptable as a result of he had by no means served as a decide.
Alexander Coleman, an employment lawyer who has had a number of instances earlier than Dearie — together with a high-profile case the place an NYPD cop alleged workplace retaliation after reporting colleagues who tried responsible him for an additional detective’s botched investigation — stated he was impressed with the decide.
“He took a really troublesome, thorny difficulty and he untangled it and reached the best end result,” he stated. “He’s very considerate and really contemplative.”
Dearie graduated from St. John’s College Faculty of Legislation and has additionally labored as an legal professional in non-public observe. He’s initially from Rockville Middle on Lengthy Island.
The decide didn’t reply to a request for remark.