March 06, 2007

Money on Libby for the Appeal

by PG

While I disagreed with the conservatives who were convinced that Scooter Libby would be found not guilty by a jury (show 'em House of Cards, and he's going down), I admit that Libby has a better chance on appeal. I didn't follow Libby's trial closely -- falling asleep in a lengthy discovery hearing for the case last summer killed my interest -- but it seems like an Arthur Anderson thing: lack of credibility sinks defendants with juries and even many bench trials. When you no longer have to contemplate Libby's sketchy ass, but instead are considering whether the evidence established in the trial record actually rises to the legal standard necessary for conviction, his case looks better. This may be more to the defendant's favor in a perjury trial than in corporate law cases, where fiduciary duty complicates mens rea; if the trial record establishes that any under-oath falsities by Libby were not definitely conscious lies, he'll get off more easily than a corporate officers who said something incorrect under oath, without knowing it was incorrect, but who had a fiduciary duty to know the facts he was discussing.

March 6, 2007 02:54 PM | TrackBack
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