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Afternoon Briefs: Trump-boosting fake lawyer sentenced; 3 of Biden’s new judicial picks have public defender experience

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Trump-boosting fake lawyer sentenced to prison

A Tennessee man who founded Students for Trump has been sentenced to 13 months in prison for posing as an elite lawyer and taking more than $46,000 from would-be clients. John Lambert had posed as a lawyer named Eric Pope and had created a fake law firm website using biographies from Cravath, Swaine & Moore. (The New York Daily News, Law360)

Biden nominates 3 with public defender experience for judgeships

President Joe Biden on Wednesday nominated six people for federal judgeships, including three with public defender experience. Eunice C. Lee, nominated to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at New York, is currently a federal public defender, as is Veronica S. Rossman, nominated to the 10th Circuit at Denver. U.S. District Chief Judge Gustavo A. Gelpí Jr. of Puerto Rico, formerly a public defender, is nominated to the 1st Circuit at Boston. If confirmed, Gelpi would be the second judge from Puerto Rico to sit on the 1st Circuit. Lee would be the second Black woman to sit on the 2nd Circuit. Biden has nominated 20 judicial candidates since he took office. (Reuters, Law360, White House announcement via How Appealing)

Judge finds factors supporting longer sentence for Chauvin

Judge Peter Cahill of Hennepin County, Minnesota, found four aggravating factors Wednesday that support a longer sentence for Derek Chauvin, the fired Minneapolis police officer convicted in the May 2020 death of George Floyd. Cahill said Chauvin abused a position of trust and authority, treated Floyd with particular cruelty, committed the offense while children were present, and committed the crime in a group with the active participation of three other officers. (CNN, Cahill’s decision)

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