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2nd N.J. Attorney Charged re Alleged Law Office Conspiracy to Murder Witness

Posted May 27, 2009 1:07 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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A second New Jersey attorney is facing federal criminal charges in connection with an claimed conspiracy by high-profile criminal defense lawyer Paul Bergin.

Thomas Moran, 42, of Paramus, who had an office in Bergrin's law shop in Newark, is accused of conspiring to hire a Chicago hit man to murder a witness in a Monmouth County drug case as part of a racketeering enterprise allegedly conducted, in part, through Bergin's law office, reports the News Transcript.

The claimed conspiracy failed because the man the defendants allegedly sought to strike a deal with was a cooperating witness, according to acting U.S. Attorney Ralph Marra Jr. But Moran is nonetheless charged with conspiracy to travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise and two counts of travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise, the newspaper reports.

Bergrin, 53, a former state and federal prosecutor, faces a broader array of charges including accusations that he conspired to murder a witness in another drug case who actually was killed before he could testify, as detailed in an earlier ABAJournal.com post.

A hearing was originally scheduled today in federal court in Newark to determine whether Bergrin will be released on bail, the Star-Ledger reported. Prosecutors contend he should be held without bail because he is a flight risk.

However, it was postponed until tomorrow so that an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation could be questioned by Bergrin's attorney, reports the Associated Press.

Additional coverage:

ABAJournal.com: "Feds Say Indicted NJ Lawyer Had 8 Cases in Which Witnesses Died or Lied"

Updated at 4:35 p.m. to include information from subsequent Associated Press coverage.

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