Louisiana

Disgraced former Louisiana prosecutor faces sentencing

  • In this undated family photo provided by Tammy Glover, Danelle Keim, who was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, poses with her son Tyler.  Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday  Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (Courtesy of Tammy Glover via AP)

    In this undated family photo provided by Tammy Glover, Danelle Keim, who was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, poses with her son Tyler. Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (Courtesy of Tammy Glover via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this  Monday, Aug. 8, 2016 photo, Tammy Glover, whose daughter, Danelle Keim, was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, pauses while speaking at her home in Destrahan, La. Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday  Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

    In this Monday, Aug. 8, 2016 photo, Tammy Glover, whose daughter, Danelle Keim, was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, pauses while speaking at her home in Destrahan, La. Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this Monday, Aug. 8, 2016 photo, Tammy Glover, whose daughter, Danelle Keim, was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, pauses while speaking at her home in Destrahan, La.. Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday  Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

    In this Monday, Aug. 8, 2016 photo, Tammy Glover, whose daughter, Danelle Keim, was a key witness in the case against former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel before she died of a drug overdose in 2013, pauses while speaking at her home in Destrahan, La.. Former Louisiana prosecutor Harry Morel, 73, is accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing, Wednesday Aug. 17, 2016, on a single charge of obstruction of justice. Morel faces a maximum of three years in prison under his guilty plea. According to the FBI and the local sheriff, the 73-year-old prosecutor solicited sex from at least 20 women, including Danelle Keim, in exchange for favorable treatment. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)  (The Associated Press)

A former Louisiana prosecutor who was accused of soliciting sex from at least 20 women in exchange for favorable treatment faces sentencing Wednesday in federal court on an obstruction charge.

Seventy-three-year-old Harry Morel was district attorney for 33 years in St. Charles Parish, about 20 miles west of New Orleans. Now he faces a maximum of three years in prison after pleading guilty to the single charge.

The deal closed the case, reflecting the difficulty of balancing the scales of justice between a powerful defendant and vulnerable victims.

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite said that statutes of limitations on some alleged crimes, and the death of a key witness played into the eventual plea bargain.

Defense attorney Ralph Capitelli has accused prosecutors of a smear campaign to influence sentencing.