Disgraced former district attorney Mike Nifong filed a motion last week to dismiss the civil charges launched against him by the three Duke lacrosse players wrongly accused of rape.

Lawyers for Nifong argue in court documents that because he was acting as a public prosecutor, he should be protected from such civil claims, The (Raleigh) News and Observer reported. Some law experts, however, have said that assuming the role of investigator in the case opened him to punitive legal action, The N&O reported.

Collin Finnerty, Reade Seligmann and Dave Evans, Trinity '06, launched a civil lawsuit against Nifong and other defendants in October 2007.

Shortly thereafter, Nifong filed for bankruptcy, attempting to shield himself from the lawsuits. Last year, however, two judges ruled that the players' claims should be heard in federal court, effectively nullifying his bankruptcy protection.