News Roundup

Afternoon Briefs: Lawyer convicted in conspiracy involving fake law firms; legal jobs fall

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Lawyer convicted in conspiracy that involved creation of fake law firms

Virginia lawyer David H. Miller, 70, of Fairfax was convicted Friday on charges of conspiring to defraud and to launder fraud proceeds totaling more than $1.5 million. Miller was accused of helping set up fake law firms to bill his former employer for work that wasn’t performed. Prosecutors also accused him of conspiring with his wife, Linda Diane Wallis, to embezzle money from an autism group and from the campaign of a state senator. Miller had contended at trial that he actually did the legal work for which he billed his employer, and he had no idea that his wife was taking money from the autism group and the political campaign. (The Washington Post, press release)

Legal jobs fall in September after big gains in August

The legal services sector lost 900 jobs in September, according to seasonally adjusted numbers by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The decline follows a big upward leap in August, when 4,100 legal jobs were added. The legal sector had 1,147,200 jobs in September, down from 1,148,100 jobs in August. The legal sector had 4,900 more jobs this September than in September 2018. (Bureau of Labor Statistics,, Law360)

Supreme Court declines to toss gun case as moot

The U.S. Supreme Court declined Monday to dismiss a Second Amendment case as moot, deciding instead to consider the issue at oral argument. The case before the court concerns regulations that had banned New York City residents from transporting handguns outside city limits. The regulations have since been revised. Five Democratic senators had filed a controversial amicus brief urging dismissal that said the case had been engineered by the National Rifle Association, which promoted the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh. (Reuters, SCOTUSblog, Supreme Court order list)

Court stays execution of Jewish inmate who alleged judge used anti-Semitic slurs

The top criminal court in Texas has stayed the execution of a Jewish death-row inmate who claimed that the judge in his case had referred to him outside court using anti-Semitic slurs. The inmate, Randy Halprin, was one of seven prison escapees accused of killing a police officer after they held up a sporting goods store. Halprin said he wasn’t the triggerman, but he was found criminally responsible under Texas’ law of parties, which holds conspirators liable for the actions of other conspirators. (Courthouse News Service, the New York Times, the Dallas Morning News)

Quinn Emanuel name partner dies at 72

A. William Urquhart, a name partner at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, died Friday at age 72. The cause of death was complications stemming from a bone marrow transplant. Urquhart, who handled complex business disputes, helped drive the growth of Quinn Emanuel with his “vision, bonhomie and flair for recruiting,” the firm said in a press release. (Quinn Emanuel press release)

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