Obituary: Kevin Thomas Duffy


Kevin Thomas Duffy died on April 1. He had been recovering at Nathaniel Witherell from a short-term illness in the rehabilitation area. He tested positive and was moved to Greenwich Hospital where he died Wednesday.

Kevin Thomas Duffy was born into an immigrant Irish family in the South Bronx, NY in January 1933. His family moved to the Kingsbridge section in the Northwest Bronx, where he attended parochial schools until 1950 when he entered Fordham College. After college, Duffy was a night student at Fordham Law School. During his law school years, he worked as a bailiff-law clerk to Hon. J. Edward Lumbard of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

in 1957 Kevin married Irene Krumeich. Irene, an accomplished judge with the New York state Family Court and also served in the Criminal Court and the New York Supreme Court.

Upon graduation and admission to the bar, Kevin served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York (SDNY). After a short time in the civil division he was transferred to the criminal division wherein 1960 he was promoted to Assistant Chief of the Criminal Division.

Before the judgeship Kevin served as the Regional Administrator of the New York Regional Office of the Securities & Exchange Commission. That office had a staff of over 200 and it was considered the premier unit of the Commission. He reinvigorated that office, making it the jewel of the SEC. It brought both civil and administrative actions against members of the securities industry and assisted the US Attorney’s office in criminal cases involving securities fraud. Because of his outstanding work at the Commision, he was offered the post of US District Judge (SDNY).

Kevin was sworn into judgeship on November 28, 1972 and his illustrious judicial career lasted until September 30, 2016. During that time, Judge Duffy gained a sterling reputation by trying some of the most difficult cases in the dockets of the US Courts. These included a number of Mafia cases (e.g. US v. Tramunti, US v. Castellano); a number of terrorist cases (e.g. US v. Salameh, US v. Mazrook, US v. Ramsi Youssef (the embassy bombing), US v. Bin Laden); the Black Liberation Army case (US v. Odinga); and the Iranian Assets case, among others.
Kevin taught Securities Law and Trial Practice at Brooklyn Law School, NYU, Pace, and Fordham and lectured at various law schools and universities in the US and overseas.

Kevin joined Duffy & Staab LLC after retiring on September 30, 2016, following his 44 years of service as a U.S. District Judge in the Southern District of New York.

He is survived by his wife Irene, his daughter, Irene Moira Lueling; two sons, Kevin Jr. and Gavin; two sisters, Marie Heslin and Patricia McKeon; eight grandchildren; and his nephew, Edward Krumeich II. His son Patrick died in 2017.

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