JUNE 25 2009

1. The Cheating of Don Siegelman, Part I
2. The Cheating of Don Siegelman, Part II
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1. The Cheating of Don Siegelman, Part I
by Roger Schuler of Legal Schnauzer

....The U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals cheated former Alabama
Governor Don Siegelman in multiple ways. The most glaring example
involves the statute of limitations, so we will start there.

....All of the activity that constituted the alleged bribery took place in
summer 1999. But the government's original indictment was dated
May 17, 2005. That's almost one full year past the five-year statute of
limitations.

<link to source>
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2. The Cheating of Don Siegelman, Part II
by Roger Schuler of Legal Schnauzer

....The Siegelman brief repeatedly cites McCormick and states,
correctly, that the agreement must be "explicit." And the 11th Circuit
takes one throwaway use of the word "express" and misstates the
Siegelman argument entirely.

How to explain this curious reading by the 11th Circuit? I can only
think of two explanations:

* One of the judges on the panel (James C. Hill) is 84 years old.
Another (Gerald Bard Tjoflat) is 79. The whipper snapper of the group
is 61-year-old J.L. Edmondson. Perhaps Hill and Tjoflat have lost their
ability to read simple, clear language, and Edmondson was "out to
lunch" on this opinion. Thus, we are talking about incompetence.

* The judges intentionally misstated the Siegelman argument as a way
to get the result they wanted. Thus, we are talking about corruption.

As we will see in a moment, the "explicit vs. express" argument really
didn't matter. That's because trial judge Mark Fuller's jury instruction
didn't use either word.


<link to source>
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