Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Almost a Juror for the Hall Trial

Whoever said “it’s a small world” wasn’t kidding.

I’ve been fulfilling my U.S. citizenship duties these two weeks, showing up as summoned to the U.S. District Courthouse in D.C. as part of the pool of potential jurors from which sitting juries are chosen.

On Tuesday, 55 of us paraded into the courtroom of Judge Henry H. Kennedy Jr. I was surprised to see sitting before us at the defense table none other than former Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Robert Hall Jr. (ANC6C). He was indicted on charges of wire, mail and securities fraud, in addition to operating a Ponzi scheme. Hall is representing himself. The Voice of the Hill offers more coverage.

According to Judge Kennedy, Hall’s trial is expected to last two weeks.

Hall was indicted on separate charges in January--along with my current ANC6C Commissioner Anthony Rivera--for fraud, conspiracy and money laundering. Rivera, with whom I’ve worked for many hours on the noise issue, has told me he has done nothing wrong, his ANC record is good, and he will fight all charges. His trial is scheduled for October.

During Tuesday’s voi dire, Hall read to us his witness list, which included about two dozen names. Among them are many current and former ANC6C commissioners--including Rivera--as well as several members of the D.C. city council, including Marion Barry and Kwame Brown.

As expected, the judge excused me from the jury because I was familiar with the details of the case and knew several of the witnesses.

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