CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. – A Long Island judge is accused of texting advice to prosecutors on how to try a case against a defendant facing a drug charge.
Newsday reports Suffolk County District Court Judge Janine Barbera-Dalli recused herself from the case Monday at the request of the defendant's attorney, Legal Aid Society lawyer Juliann Ryan.
Ryan says prosecutors shared the texts with her before the trial started.
Ryan says Barbera-Dalli called her client a "trafficker" and suggested a legal strategy to remove Legal Aid from the case. Ryan says the texts showed "extreme bias" on Barbera-Dalli's behalf.
The defendant is charged with heroin possession and loitering.
Suffolk County Criminal Bar Association President Christopher Brocato called Barbera-Dalli's actions "outrageous" and questioned her impartiality.
Suffolk Administrative Judge C. Randall Hinrichs says he will look into the allegations.
Information from: Newsday, http://www.newsday.com