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Richard E. Gerstein; Prosecutor in Watergate Case

Richard E. Gerstein, 68, a longtime prosecutor who helped link the Watergate burglary to former President Richard M. Nixon’s staff, and more recently defended Paul Reubens, the actor who plays Pee-wee Herman, on a morals charge. For nearly four decades, the attorney was a legal and political power in Dade County, Florida’s most populous county. Nationally, he was best known for winning the first conviction in the Watergate case. His office linked Nixon reelection funds to Bernard Barker, one of four Miami-based Watergate burglars. Barker was found guilty of money laundering. In 1978, Gerstein entered private practice and last year negotiated an agreement in which film and TV comedian Reubens pleaded no contest to indecent exposure charges. In Miami on Sunday of a heart attack.


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