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Lawyer who flipped the bird at defendant is removed as juror; was cab conflict the reason?

Posted Oct 22, 2013 6:48 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A lawyer who is a partner at an elite Manhattan law firm has been removed as a juror in a New York fraud case, but flipping the bird at the defendant is apparently not the reason for her dismissal.

The lawyer was dismissed on Friday, apparently because she read a newspaper article about the case, a court spokeswoman told the New York Times. A defense lawyer in the case, Gerald Shargel, had asked U.S. District Judge George Daniels to dismiss the juror because she gave lead defendant Mark Mazer the finger last week as they both tried to enter a cab. Shargel also said the juror “locked eyes with me and gave me an extremely angry look” after jury selection ended.

During voir dire, the lawyer had said she would be very tired if she served as a juror because she would have to work every night and help care for her infant children. She works in corporate finance and securities.

The juror was questioned after the cab incident about whether she had any contact with the parties. She told the court she had been running for a cab but someone else took it, making her angry. She said she didn’t know who took the cab and she could be an impartial juror.

The three defendants in the trial are accused in a scandal involving kickbacks in New York’s CityTime payroll system.

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