A federal judge in Boston today ordered the U.S. government to pay more than $101 million in the case of four men who spent decades in prison for a 1965 murder they didn’t commit after the FBI withheld evidence of their innocence, reports the Associated Press. The FBI encouraged perjury, helped frame the four men, and withheld for more than three decades information that could have cleared them, U.S. District Judge Nancy Gertner said. She called the government’s argument that the FBI had no duty to get involved in a state case “absurd.”
Peter Limone, Joseph Salvati and the families of the two other men who died in prison had sued the federal government for malicious prosecution. A Justice Department lawyer had argued that federal authorities couldn’t be held responsible for the results of a state prosecution and had no duty to share information with the officials who prosecuted Limone, Salvati, Henry Tameleo and Louis Greco.