October 23, 2018

Ex-BDO CEO Wins New Trial Because One of the Jurors Lied About Being a Drunk, Shoplifting Shellfish, Everything

Former BDO CEO and wolfpack leader Denis Field has won a new trial on charges of tax fraud thanks to a juror in his trial who lied about her alcoholism and, oh…pretty much everything:

U.S. District Judge William Pauley in Manhattan today overturned the convictions, ruling that the presence of Catherine Conrad, who was Juror No. 1, denied the three a fair trial. “While Conrad claimed that she was a ‘fair and unbiased’ juror, this court cannot credit that assertion,” Pauley said in an opinion today. “Conrad is a pathological liar and utterly untrustworthy.”

Along with Field, former Jenkens & Gilchrist head Paul Daugerdas and Donna Guerin, a Jenkens & Gilchrist lawyer were also granted new trials. David Parse, a former Deutsche Bank Alex.Brown banker, wasn't so lucky, as Judge Pauley ruled that his attorneys "had a suspicion that Juror No. 1 was not the person she represented herself to be during voir dire." 

But anyway, back to this juror. As we said, Ms. Conrad had a really, really, really hard time telling the court anything that was even remotely truthful. Observe:

Conrad told the court her highest level of education was a bachelor’s degree, when she had actually received a law degree from Brooklyn Law School in 1997. She was admitted to practice in 2000 and was later suspended, which she also failed to tell the court. 

Okay, lying about professional credentials is pretty bad, as has been demonstrated by recent events. But there can be pressure to misrepresent things like this. You know, the pressure of society and all. Not that unusual in the realm of baldfaced lies. So what else did Conrad consciously forget to tell everyone?

Conrad lied about her residence, telling the court she lived in Westchester County rather than the Bronx. 

Oh. Well, I suppose you would lie about living in Westchester if you actually wanted to admit that you lived in Westchester. To some that would seem like a pretty weird thing to lie about. But wait! It gets better:

[S]he hid the fact that she had been arrested at least five times and that her husband is a career criminal. In a hearing in February, Conrad admitted she had once stolen a bag of shrimp from a convenience store while drunk. Another time she punched a police officer in the stomach as he arrested her for drunk driving. At the time of the Daugerdas trial, there was an outstanding warrant for her arrest issued in Winslow, Arizona, after she was arrested for an altercation with her husband and failed to appear in court.

Admitting that you once shoplifted shellfish and an arrest for police battery after a DUI aren't exactly something you go posting to your Facebook timeline, so these lies could be understandable. Strange, but understandable. And what's the motivation you ask? 

In the hearing, Conrad said she covered up her past to be “more marketable” as a juror.

All these lies in the name of civic duty? Jesus. That's the biggest lie of all.

Juror Lies Trigger New Trial for Three in Tax-Fraud Case [Bloomberg]

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