Skip to comments.Lay's death could set Skilling free
Posted on 07/07/2006 5:13:03 PM PDT by Sunshine55
Lawyers likely to argue that entire case has effectively been voided
WASHINGTON -- Kenneth Lay's sudden death could prove to be an unexpected legal bequest to Jeffrey Skilling, his co-defendant in the landmark Enron Corp. fraud case.
Mr. Skilling's legal team will almost certainly invoke Mr. Lay's demise to try to reverse his own fraud and conspiracy conviction or demand a retrial, legal experts said yesterday.
That's because Mr. Lay's death Wednesday of an apparent heart attack effectively voids the entire case against the Enron founder, including the guilty verdict. Mr. Skilling, the former Enron chief executive officer who is appealing his own conviction, could now argue that much of the evidence against him stems from a case that no longer exists, argued lawyer Jacob Frenkel, a former federal prosecutor and white collar crime specialist.
"This is the first time this has happened in such a high profile case," Mr. Frenkel said. "Everybody is scrambling to see what the law says on this."
How it all plays out could set a legal precedent, he added.
(Excerpt) Read more at theglobeandmail.com ...
It will not void the conviction, much as his lawyers would like to argue.
Lay was guilty, Skilling was guilty. There was enough in the financial transactions to convict, but that isn't as easy to demonstrate to non-finance types. Been there personally with another bunch of guilty folks.
Then again, most AUSA's aren't the best and brightest.
You get judged guilty and are sentenced and the prosecutor will use every trick in the book to throw out legitimate evidence of a wrongful conviction.
I have no idea why this would be so.
This is a garbage opinion worthy of twisted liberal lawyer logic. Makes no sense. Each was convicted.
Legal mumbo-jumbo. This sort of thing, IMO, actually moves us farther from a nation under the "rule of law" and closer to a corrupt nation in the clutches of high prices lawyers and like minded judges.
The only reason is because the conviction was on appeal and a lot of the evidence was given by a (now) dead guy.
If anything, this puts Skilling in hotter water. The public wants someone to pay for the Enron debacle, and he's the last big dog standing.
Ken Lay's death is not a get of jail free card. It's more like go there until you're dead card.
Set him Free!
But first gather all of the "Screwed" Stock Holders, Employees and Retired... and set him loose in the middle of that mass, if he escapes with his life, he can keep running forever, if not, well (in the words of the Great One), Clinton Happens.
But I thought appeals were not to decide evidence, but to decide about possible improper procedures at the first trial. IOW, you could decide on the admissibility of certain evidence, but not change the evidence itself.
Too bad Fastow got off so easily. His wife should be rotting in jail too.
He died without a chance to appeal. That is the fly in the ointment .
The law of the land is that if a defendent is deceased prior to exhausting his legal remedies.....appeal.....then his conviction is expunged from the record.
The criminal case against Lay ends with it undecided from a legal standpoint. Nobody is going to sentence his body to a jail cell, nor are they going to decide whether his appeals had any merit.
It just stops. His conviction isn't reversed or halted. That happened.
The only legal effect is that it won't be possible to use the criminal conviction in any civil proceeding to seize his remaining assets. But that's not a huge obstacle. It's no different than if he had pleaded no contest at the criminal trial.
I am not a lawyer (but I did stay a at Holiday Inn Express just kidding).
Seriously where Lay and Skilling tried together or separately? If separately then I would think Skilling has less chance of getting his conviction overturned since his trial stood on its own merits unless his conviction was based soley on Lays testimony.
Even if they were tried together, I would think Skilling at best could have grounds for a retrial but people with a better understanding of the law will Im sure correct me and shed more light.
In any case I hope they both get what they deserve, either in this live or in another ..
This is ridiculous! Lay was tried and convicted. If he has an appeal in process the appeal is terminated. Period. As for Skilling, if he has an appeal it should not be affected unless the appeals court overturns the verdict and a retrial is ordered. The appeals court only looks at the trial as far as how it was handled, etc. It does NOT retry anything.
The Globe & Mail, I believe, is a UK paper. What the heck do they know?
Evidently there was a similar case in 1971 that went to the Supreme Court and they found in favor of the deceased .