Mr. Krieger was a fixture in the Miami Criminal Defense community. Although he received nationwide attention in the 1990s with the defense of NY Mobster John Gotti, and before that Mafia head "Joe Bannanas", it was Krieger's defense of the Lakota Indian Tribe at Wounded Knee in the early 1970s that first drew our attention to him. A Florida Bar article on the case is here.
Mr. Krieger had a big, courtoom filling booming voice. He was courteous to opposing counsel and Judges and it is no exaggeration to say he, amongst most of those in our profession, was larger than life. Mr. Krieger was a master of cross examination. At times he could brutally go for the jugular and leave the witness gasping on the witness stand. On other occassions he would slip the knife in gently and the case would be over before anyone else realized it.
In these times there is always the question of whether the passing was covid19 releated, and we do not believe it was. Mr. Krieger was in ill health for a long time.
We had the occassion to met Mr. Krieger several times. There was a story we cannot quite recall in which he talked about his defense of a colleague's son who we think was also an attorney. He went though the tale of the trial in which counsel for a co-defendant kept undoing all of the damage he was inflicting upon the prosecution. He ended his story with the maxium "which is why I always say I can handle the prosecutors but lord save me from co-counsel."
Albert Krieger was a great lawyer who did great things and saved many people from the maw of the government. He lived a great life doing what he loved and doing it better than anyone else, and he will be missed.
UPDATE: This is Ed Shohat's remembrance of the great Albert Krieger:
When Albert, Ted Wells and I defended the “Commission Bribery Case” in front of Ed Davis, one of the finest gentlemen federal judges ever, the government saved its “best” for last, Howard Gary. Gary was a con man’s con man and he had conned the government into relying on him to convince a jury, tired after a boring 6 week slog of a trial, that Albert and Ted’s client had bribed Jose and my clients to secure their “minority participation” on major bond issues for construction projects here in Miami-Dade County.
Albert took the lead cross which he opened by walking up to Gary in the witness box and inquiring of Gary “Are you or are you not a criminal?” Gary, royally pissed off at Albert, spent the next 2 days refusing to answer even the simplest question by Albert, then Jose. The jury hated him which, after all, was the method to Albert’s madness of an opening question.
The spectacle Albert orchestrated for the jury made everyone so angry at Gary that when I rose to do my cross, Judge Davis called me to the bench and whispered “Ed, we all know you have no defense in this case. So I want you to do me a favor. Before you ask Mr. Gary any questions please go right up to him and punch him in the nose as hard as you can. I guarantee you no more than 1 hr at FDC.”
Albert and Ted’s client and Jose’s client were acquitted.