Scruggs Nation, February 22: home sour home

There was a new motion filed in USA v. Scruggs (Northern Mississippi edition) yesterday — a motion by the government to empanel an anonymous jury and sequester jurors for the length of the trial. Let’s take a look at the factors a court ponders when considering whether the names and background information about jurors should be withheld from the parties, and you see if you can pick out which factors the government is worried about:

(1) The defendant’s involvement in organized crime;

(2) The defendant’s participation in a group with the capacity to harm jurors;

(3) The defendant’s past attempts to interfere with the judicial process or witnesses;

(4) The potential that if convicted the defendants will suffer a lengthy incarceration and

substantial monetary penalties; and

(5) The extensive publicity that could enhance the possibility that jurors’ names would

become public and expose them to intimidation and harassment.

If your eyes came to rest first on number 3, you have good instincts. The government also cited reasons number 4 and 5.

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