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The Boston Globe

Opinion

JOAN VENNOCHI

The fallout for Carmen Ortiz

With backing from the late Ted Kennedy, Carmen Ortiz became the first Latina US attorney in Massachusetts. She was sworn in by Eric H. Holder Jr., the nation’s first black attorney general, before hundreds of applauding judges, dignitaries, and lawyers.

Today, those throngs of delighted supporters are gone as Ortiz faces harsh scrutiny for prosecuting Aaron Swartz, a 26-year-old Internet activist who died last month from an apparent suicide. A House committee is investigating whether prosecution of Swartz for allegedly using computers at MIT to gain illegal access to scholarly papers went too far, as family members charge.

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