Appellate Practice

Prof's Law Blog Led to 11th Circuit Case

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Blogging can be a legal minefield for lawyers and parties to litigation, as a Boston doctor defending a malpractice case found out recently when he outed himself as “Flea” and abruptly settled. But this minefield can also produce gold, as an Ohio State University law professor has seen.

After former Atlanta Mayor Bill Campbell spotted a critique of his 30-month tax evasion sentence on the professor’s law blog, he promptly called Douglas A. Berman and asked him to handle the appeal, says the Daily Report. Berman authors the Sentencing Law and Policy law blog.

On Friday, Berman is scheduled to argue Campbell’s case before the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta. He essentially has two arguments, the article states: One, Campbell’s constitutional rights were violated when he was not allowed to hire the defense counsel of his choice at trial. Two, the trial judge inappropriately took into account at sentencing charges on which Campbell had been acquitted at trial.

Lawyers for the prosecution would not comment, but said in briefs that “musical lawyers” and “musical truths” were what led to Campbell’s 30-month sentence. Reportedly, some 17 lawyers have represented him in the case.

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