Minor to re-argue innocence in appeals court

Wingate must first decide whether he will hear Minor’s arguments that the remaining convictions are legally invalid and should be thrown out, or if he will deny the motion and proceed to resentencing.

The U.S. Justice Department insists Wingate should not consider the arguments because they are beyond the scope of the resentencing hearing.

Minor’s legal team

As an attorney, Minor earned millions suing manufacturers of asbestos and tobacco. He worked alongside former attorney Dickie Scruggs, who is coincidentally also in prison for bribing a state court judge, an unrelated scheme in North Mississippi that began shortly after Minor’s conviction.

Minor has undoubtedly spent millions on his defense. Washington attorney Abbe Lowell, chief minority counsel to the U.S. House during Clinton’s impeachment proceedings, represented Minor when he and the judges were first tried in 2005.

Nashville attorney James Neal, who enjoyed the distinction of winning a conviction against union boss Jimmy Hoffa and serving as a Watergate prosecutor, worked as a legal consultant on Minor’s defense. (Neal recently passed away.)

Lowell was not on Minor’s courtroom team for the second trial, but led attorneys who worked on Minor’s 5th Circuit appeal.

Sun Herald
1/17/10