Former DA Lynne Abraham sues to force out indicted DA Seth Williams

Sam Newhouse

The hits keep coming for Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, who remains in office despite numerous calls to resign since he was indicted two weeks ago on federal corruption charges.

Now his predecessor, former Philly DA Lynne Abraham, is joining in with a lawsuit to force Williams out of office.

“In refusing to resign from office despite his inability to practice law … Williams disregards his duties and responsibilities as district attorney in favor of drawing a substantial salary, which he will undoubtedly use to fund his criminal defense,” according to the lawsuit. Abraham filed the suit Monday with veteran defense attorney Richard Sprague, also a former prosecutor at the DA’s office.

Meanwhile, civil rights leaders will hold a press conference outside the DA’s office on Tuesday, at noon, where they will call on Williams to resign.

Representatives of the NAACP, Black Lives Matter, National Action Network and local activists will present “a united front from the local social justice community to amplify the call for District Attorney Seth Williams to resign,” organizers said.

In fact, Abraham’s suit claims that it is a violation of state law for Williams to continue serving as DA after Williams’ law license was suspended as a result of the March 21 indictment. He said he wants to continue serving the office in an administrative capacity.

Abraham was Philly’s first female district attorney and served from 1991 to 2009. Williams ran and won after she decided not to pursue a sixth term.

Williams is accused of accepting illegal gifts in return for favorable treatment to friends and business owners. He has denied all charges.

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