Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Help, My Jailhouse Lawyer Is Incompetent!

The Dickinson Press (Fargo, ND) has this great reminder about the advisability of getting competent legal advice:

"A federal judge says a defendant in a criminal case who gave legal advice to other inmates cost himself and the others added prison time.  Neville Solomon [a Guyanese national involved in money laundereing and Ponzi investment schemes] was recently convicted in [Fargo,] North Dakota of investment fraud. [Solomon] refused to listen to his court-appointed attorney and instead cited commercial law and religious passages in his defense.  U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson said in court that Solomon's filings had no place in a criminal proceeding and sentenced him to more than seven years in prison.  The judge said 'a whole bunch of people [co-defendants] wound up in prison for a lot longer time than they should have because of Solomon's jailhouse lawyering."
One can only hope that Solomon won't be handling the appellate portion of these cases.

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