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Watergate Veteran Hired to Represent Florida Sheriff's Department


September-October 1994

Miami criminal defense lawyer Jon Sale has been hired to represent the Volusia County, Florida Sheriff's Department, which is the target of a Federal grand jury investigation into the department's drug interdiction program ("High-Powered Help for Beleaguered Sheriff's Office," Law Enforcement News, Sept. 30, 1994, p. 5). The grand jury is investigating whether Sheriff Bob Vogel told members of the department's Selective Enforcement Teams to target minority vehicles at traffic stops.

Two minority drivers filed a Federal civil suit alleging that the traffic stops are based on race. That case should go to trial in January. In June 1993, Attorney General Janet Reno ordered an FBI investigation of the policy. The interdiction program has netted the department $8 million in seized cash from drivers on Interstate 95. About half of this money was later returned.

Sale, former chief assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida, worked on the Watergate case with special prosecutors Archibald Cox and Leon Jaworski.