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Tag: U.S. District Judge

Legal Wrangling in ex-Cong. Jefferson’s Conviction Continues; Oral Arguments Set for May

file photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Nearly six years after the FBI launched a sting and 1 1/2 years after he was convicted on public corruption charges, the legal wrangling goes on and ex-New Orleans Congressman William Jefferson remains a free man.

The latest: Oral arguments for Jefferson’s appeal in the 4th U.S. Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., have been set for the week of May 10, according to Bruce Alpert of the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

The paper reports that, according to experts, a three-judge panel could issue a ruling by the summer, but that’s not likely to resolve the matter considering the losing side will appeal that ruling.

Jefferson was convicted in August 2009 of 11 of 16 corruption-related counts and was subsequently hit with a 13 year sentence. U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III of Alexandria, Va., has allowed Jefferson to remain free pending his appeal.

The paper also reported that the 4th Circuit granted a Justice Department request to allow its attorneys 21,000 words in the appellate brief instead of the normal 14,000 word limit.

Senate Votes to Oust Fed Judge Thomas Porteous of New Orleans

Judge Thomas Porteous

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

As expected, Thomas Porteous of New Orleans is no longer a federal judge.

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted to convict him on all four articles of impeachment that included allegations that he corruptly accepted meals, trips and other gifts from a bail bondsman while serving as a state judge, lied about a bankruptcy filing and failed to disclose his corrupt behavior during the confirmation process for federal judge.

The vote strips him of his lifetime presidential appointment and his $174,000 annual pension, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. He was appointed by President Clinton in 1994.

“Today brought closure to the long controversy over my actions as a federal district judge,” he said after the vote, according to the Times-Picayune. “I am deeply saddened to be removed from office but I felt it was important not just to me but to the judiciary to take this fight to the Senate.

“I am deeply grateful to those senators who voted against the articles. While I still believe these allegations did not rise to the level of impeachable offenses as a constitutional matter, I understand how people of good-faith could disagree.

“I will now be returning to Louisiana and my family. My family has been a constant and vital source of support throughout this ordeal. I have previously apologized for the mistakes that I committed in this case. I never disputed many of the underlying facts and I previously accepted punishment in the Fifth Circuit. While I disagree with the decision of the Senate, I must now accept that judgment.”

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NY Fed Judge and Ex-Prosecutor Charles Sifton Dies at Age 74

gavel22By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

U.S. District Judge Charles P. “Tony” Sifton, a former assistant U.S. Attorney who served on the bench in New York for 30 year, has died of sarcoidosis, a lung disease, the Washington Post reported. He was 74.

Sifton served as an assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York in the 1960s and moved on to private practice before President Carter appointed him to the bench in 1977.

His ruling in January cleared the way for N.Y. Mayor Michael Bloomberg to run for for a third term. Sifton died on Nov. 9 at his Brooklyn home, the Post reported.

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