77 Facts About Alan Dershowitz


Alan Morton Dershowitz is an American lawyer and former law professor known for his work in US constitutional law and American criminal law.


Alan Dershowitz has taken on high-profile and often unpopular causes and clients.


Alan Dershowitz has represented such celebrity clients as Mike Tyson, Patty Hearst, Leona Helmsley, Julian Assange, and Jim Bakker.


In 1995, Dershowitz served as the appellate adviser on the murder trial of O J Simpson, part of the legal "Dream Team", alongside Johnnie Cochran and F Lee Bailey.


Alan Dershowitz was a member of Harvey Weinstein's defense team in 2018 and of President Donald Trump's defense team in his first impeachment trial in 2020.


Alan Dershowitz was a member of Jeffrey Epstein's defense team and helped to negotiate a 2006 non-prosecution agreement on Epstein's behalf.


Alan Dershowitz was born in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, on September 1,1938, the son of Claire and Harry Alan Dershowitz, an Orthodox Jewish couple.


Alan Dershowitz's father was a founder and president of the Young Israel of Boro Park Synagogue in the 1960s, served on the board of directors of the Etz Chaim School in Borough Park, and in retirement was co-owner of the Manhattan-based Merit Sales Company.


Alan Dershowitz attended Yeshiva University High School, an independent boys' prep school owned by Yeshiva University, in Manhattan, where he played on the basketball team.


Alan Dershowitz was a rebellious student, often criticized by his teachers.


Alan Dershowitz was a member of a Conservative minyan at Harvard Hillel but is a secular Jew.


Alan Dershowitz was halfway between a slave master and a father figure.


Alan Dershowitz told Tom Van Riper of Forbes that getting a Supreme Court clerkship was probably his second big break.


Alan Dershowitz's first was at age 14 or 15, when a camp counselor told him he was smart but that his mind operated a little differently.


Alan Dershowitz joined the Harvard Law School faculty as an assistant professor in 1964, and was made a full professor in 1967 at age 28, at that time the youngest full professor of law in the school's history.


Alan Dershowitz was appointed Felix Frankfurter professor of law in 1993.


Alan Dershowitz is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Gatestone Institute.


Alan Dershowitz's clients have included such high-profile figures as Patty Hearst, Harry Reems, Leona Helmsley, Jim Bakker, Mike Tyson, Michael Milken, O J Simpson and Kirtanananda Swami.


In 1976, Alan Dershowitz handled the successful appeal of Harry Reems, who had been convicted of distribution of obscenity resulting from acting in the pornographic movie Deep Throat.


Alan Dershowitz argued against censorship of pornography on First Amendment grounds and maintained that consumption of pornography was not harmful.


In one of his first high-profile cases, Alan Dershowitz represented Claus von Bulow, a British socialite, at his appeal for the attempted murder of his wife, Sunny von Bulow, who went into a coma in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1980.


Alan Dershowitz succeeded in having the conviction overturned, and von Bulow was acquitted in a retrial.


Alan Dershowitz told the story of the case in his book Reversal of Fortune: Inside the von Bulow case, which was adapted into a movie in 1990.


Alan Dershowitz was played by actor Ron Silver, and Alan Dershowitz himself had a cameo as a judge.


In 1989, Alan Dershowitz filed a defamation suit against Cardinal Jozef Glemp, then Archbishop of Warsaw, on behalf of Rabbi Avi Weiss.


Alan Dershowitz had previously befriended Epstein through their mutual acquaintance Lynn Forester de Rothschild.


The first investigation into Epstein concluded with a controversial non-prosecution agreement that Alan Dershowitz helped negotiate on Epstein's behalf.


In 2011, Alan Dershowitz served as a consultant for Julian Assange's legal team while Assange was facing the prospect of charges from the US government for distributing classified documents through WikiLeaks.


In May 2018, Alan Dershowitz joined Harvey Weinstein's legal team as a consultant for Weinstein's lawyer Benjamin Brafman.


In January 2020, Alan Dershowitz joined President Donald Trump's legal team as Trump was being tried on impeachment charges in the Senate.


Alan Dershowitz's addition to the team was notable, as commentators pointed out that he was a Hillary Clinton supporter and had offered occasionally controversial television defenses of Trump in the preceding two years.


Alan Dershowitz later retracted his statements made during the Clinton era, saying, "To the extent there are inconsistencies between my current position and what I said 22 years ago, I am correct today".


Alan Dershowitz endorsed Hillary Clinton in the 2008 presidential election, and later endorsed the nominee, Barack Obama.


Alan Dershowitz opposed the impeachment of Bill Clinton and said that he voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.


Alan Dershowitz campaigned against Trump during the 2016 election and has been critical of many of his actions, including his travel ban, his rescission of protections for "Dreamers", and his failure to single out white nationalists for their provocations during protests in Charlottesville.


Alan Dershowitz criticized President Obama's foreign policy stance toward Israel after the US abstained from voting on United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, which condemned Israel for building Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory.


Alan Dershowitz had a contract to provide advice to Joey Allaham, a lobbyist working for the Qatari government.


In January 2018, Alan Dershowitz questioned claims that Qatar funds terrorist groups, including Hamas, which is designated as a terrorist organization by several countries, including Israel, the US, and the European Union.


Alan Dershowitz has engaged in public debates with several other commentators, including Meir Kahane, Noam Chomsky, and Norman Finkelstein.


Alan Dershowitz was invited to respond on the same stage only after Carter had left.


Alan Dershowitz authored an editorial in the Israeli newspaper The Jerusalem Post accusing Alice Walker of bigotry for refusing to have her novel The Color Purple published by an Israeli firm.


In 2006, Alan Dershowitz argued for the prosecution of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmedinejad for incitement to genocide based on his threat of "wiping Israel off the map".


On February 29,2012, Alan Dershowitz filed an amicus brief in support of delisting the People's Mujahedin of Iran from the State Department list of foreign terrorist organizations.


Alan Dershowitz called the petition's signatories antisemitic bigots and said they knew nothing about the Middle East.


In March 2002, Alan Dershowitz published an article in The Jerusalem Post titled "New Response to Palestinian Terrorism".


Alan Dershowitz has criticized the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, saying that it has "no place in modern society".


Alan Dershowitz supports repealing the amendment, but vigorously opposes using the judicial system to read it out of the Constitution because that would open the way for further revisions to the Bill of Rights and Constitution by the courts.


Alan Dershowitz is an attorney for defendant Shirley Shawe and is looking to take the case of the Delaware Chancery's forced sale of TransPerfect away from its shareholders to the Supreme Court.


Alan Dershowitz has argued that the Delaware Chancery court violated the personal rights of an individual shareholder when it ordered the public auction on the company.


Alan Dershowitz argued that authorities should be permitted to use non-lethal torture in a ticking time bomb scenario and that it would be less destructive to the rule of law to regulate the process than to leave it to individual law-enforcement agents' discretion.


Alan Dershowitz favors preventing the government from prosecuting the subject of torture based on information revealed during such an interrogation.


Alan Dershowitz is one of several scholars at Harvard Law School who have expressed their support for limited animal rights.


In June 2018, Alan Dershowitz wrote an op-ed criticizing the American Civil Liberties Union, alleging that it had become a hyper-partisan organization and was no longer the nonpartisan group of politically diverse individuals sharing a commitment to core civil liberties it once was.


Alan Dershowitz has offered commentary on Trump's legal issues that has been polarizing among liberals and Democrats, as he has often been perceived as offering defenses of Trump's more controversial actions.


In January 2018, Alan Dershowitz said that attacking Trump's mental fitness was a "very dangerous" line of attack and that there was "no case" that Trump committed obstruction of justice by firing former FBI Director James Comey.


Alan Dershowitz called the indictment of Michael Flynn the strangest he had ever seen because Flynn lied about something that was not illegal, and claimed that "collusion" in reference to Russian meddling in the 2016 election is not a crime.


Alan Dershowitz has received some criticism from liberals and praise from conservatives for his comments on these issues.


Alan Dershowitz said on Fox News, "that affidavit is so deeply flawed and so open-ended that any good lawyer, any good defense attorney would be able to tear that apart in 30 seconds".


Alan Dershowitz called on Swetnick's lawyer Michael Avenatti, who was representing Stormy Daniels, to withdraw the affidavit because of inconsistencies.


In 2019, Alan Dershowitz said he would "enthusiastically support Joe Biden" for president.


In 2021, Alan Dershowitz said that Trump's rally preceding the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol was "constitutionally protected" speech.


Alan Dershowitz said it would be his "honor and privilege" to defend Trump in a trial.


Alan Dershowitz dismissed the charges as verifiably false and politically motivated by hostility to his support for Israel, and Menetrez reaffirmed his view that the evidence pointed to Alan Dershowitz having plagiarized his sources.


In October 2006, Alan Dershowitz wrote to DePaul University faculty members to lobby against Finkelstein's application for tenure, accusing Finkelstein of academic dishonesty.


Alan Dershowitz countersued Edwards and Cassell in 2015, and the two parties settled for an undisclosed sum by April 2016.


In June 2019, Alan Dershowitz filed a motion to dismiss Giuffre's suit and a motion to disqualify David Boies's firm from representing her.


In November 2019, Alan Dershowitz filed a countersuit against Giuffre and accused Boies of pressuring Giuffre to provide false testimony, in response to which Boies sued Alan Dershowitz in November 2019 for defamation.


Giuffre said that, given the traumatic circumstances of being trafficked by Epstein and her age, she realized that her identification of Alan Dershowitz might have been a mistake.


Alan Dershowitz said that his assertion that Boies had engaged in an extortion plot and in suborning perjury was mistaken.


Barlach and Alan Dershowitz separated in 1973 and divorced in 1976.


Jamin Dershowitz married Barbara, a Roman Catholic, which helped prompt Alan Dershowitz to write The Vanishing American Jew, dedicated to them and their children, whom Dershowitz regards as Jewish.


Alan Dershowitz has two grandchildren by Jamin: Lori and Lyle.


Alan Dershowitz is related to Los Angeles Conservative rabbi Zvi Alan Dershowitz.


Alan Dershowitz was named a Guggenheim Fellow in 1979, and in 1983 received the William O Douglas First Amendment Award from the Anti-Defamation League for his work on civil rights.


Alan Dershowitz has been awarded honorary doctorates in law from Yeshiva University, the Hebrew Union College, Monmouth University, University of Haifa, Syracuse University, Fitchburg State College, Bar-Ilan University, and Brooklyn College.


Alan Dershowitz is a member of the International Advisory Board of NGO Monitor.


Alan Dershowitz has appeared as himself in the television series Picket Fences, Spin City, and First Monday, and in the 2019 documentary No Safe Spaces.