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White-Collar Crime

Feds Say Defendant Lawyer Paid Texas Judge for Ad-Litem Work, Favorable Ruling on Sanctions Motion

Posted Jun 5, 2012 6:13 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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In opening arguments on Tuesday, the feds outlined their case against a lawyer accused in a racketeering case of paying a South Texas judge some $11,000 in bribes.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Wynne said that Ray R. Marchan paid former state District Judge Abel C. Limas for an ad-litem appointment and a favorable ruling on a sanctions motion against the attorney, reports the Brownsville Herald.

Defense attorney Noe Domingo Garza Jr. argued that Limas, who has already taken a plea in a related case, had an incentive to lie. He urged jurors to "focus," admitting that Marchan gave money to Limas, who owed some $500,000 in debts, but said the money was not in exchange for favors from the judge, and that his client made millions as an attorney and didn't need to pay Limas for work.

“Marchan did give him money, but not as a bribe,” Garza said.

Wynne said cellphone and home telephone lines for the judge had been wired by the feds for most of 2008, providing evidence that is expected to be introduced later in the case.

Earlier coverage:

ABAJournal.com: "Federal Trial About to Begin for Lawyer Accused of Paying $11K in Bribes to Texas Judge"

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