posted 2017 | State v. JJ
Hire the right lawyer, get the best possible result! This case was a bit crazy and involved a judge’s son who was arrested for several counts of trafficking drugs which carried a 15 year minimum mandatory sentence. The client was represented by another criminal defense attorney and decided that he would perform substantial assistance. The client signed an agreement that expressly stated that if he failed to abide by the rules, then he would automatically be sentenced to 15 years in prison.
Unfortunately, the client relapsed and continued to use drugs. He also failed a polygraph test. Since the judge’s son already entered into a plea, sending him to prison for 15 years was simply a formality. Recognizing the need for a solid criminal appellate lawyer, Mr. Forman was retained as co-counsel in order to find a way to avoid the 15 year prison sentence. Once again, Mr. Forman found a way to get it done. After combing through the paperwork, Mr. Forman discovered that the trial court never officially accepted the client’s plea- a minor technically that few attorney’s would notice. In fact, the judge, prosecutor and trial counsel did not even notice this error.
The trial court agreed and vacated the client’s plea! Mr. Forman and his co-counsel prepared the case for trial and filed several motions to dismiss based upon entrapment. Depositions were conducted, even as far as in Oklahoma. Since the client had already been in custody for over two years, Mr. Forman and co-counsel were able to convince the prosecutor to give the client a five year sentence, with credit for the two years that he served. Needless to say, the client and his family were thankful that Mr. Forman was able to reduce his sentence by 10 years.