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OT&T: Hung Jury / Mistrial, in Turner Case

Posted By: hobie
Date: Friday, 27-Jul-2001 15:44:12
www.rumormill.news/10334

In Response To: OT&T: 2 More Plead Guilty, Final Trial Begins Wed. (hobie)

July 27, 2001

Jury hung; judge rules mistrial

BY CARL WALWORTH

City Editor

URBANA - The tear in Jim Turner's eye Thursday afternoon represented mixed emotions.

Turner was relieved and pleased that most of a federal jury voted to acquit him in two criminal charges in the Omega Trust and Trading case. But a unanimous vote is required for a verdict, so U.S. District Judge Mike McCuskey ruled the case a mistrial and set jury selection for a new trial for Aug. 6.

So another Turner emotion was disappointment at the prospect of another trial of about three weeks and the stress that goes with it.

"I'm innocent," Turner said outside the courtroom while acknowledging the support of family members who stayed with him through jury deliberations.

Defense attorney John Gadau was pleased that the votes favored Turner, but said that vote won't mean anything when the trial begins again. "There are no moral victories," Gadau said.

The jury of 11 women and one man deliberated for 2.5 days in Turner's trial on a charge of money laundering conspiracy and conducting a financial transaction with proceeds of illegal activity. The last vote was 8-4 for a not guilty verdict on the money laundering charge and 9-3 for a not guilty verdict on the charge of conducting a financial transaction with proceeds of illegal activity.

The jury at midday Thursday wrote McCuskey a note that it remained divided. At that time, the vote was 9-3 for acquittal on the money laundering charge and 7-5 on the other charge.

"I personally don't see it changing," jury forewoman Bessie Taylor wrote of the stalemate in a note to McCuskey at 4:10 p.m. "We are still unable to reach a unanimous agreement." With the midday note, Taylor wrote: "We have been split all along and they are not changing their mind."

McCuskey sent the jury back for more deliberations after lunch after reading them an instruction on listening to each other's views and being willing to change their vote if convinced they were wrong.

But in the afternoon McCuskey agreed that the jury had done all it could do, that further deliberation would not result in a verdict. McCuskey told jurors the mistrial "is no fault of your own," that people digest information in different ways.

Lead prosecutor Esteban Sanchez said the case against Turner is the same evidence that resulted in 17 guilty pleas and one guilty verdict against Omega co-defendants in the last year. "I think the evidence is there and we'll moved forward," Sanchez said.

Of the jury's decision, he said: "That's the way they viewed the evidence. They couldn't reach a decision. I thought our evidence proved he was guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."

After the judge sent the jury back to deliberations around the noon hour Thursday, the jury asked for and received four exhibits related to Turner's finances. The jury also asked for a copy of questions asked during jury selection such as: "Can you put personal feelings aside," and "can you render a guilty verdict." Transcripts from jury selection were unavailable.

Turner was accused of criminal conduct in connection with a fraud called Omega in which investors were told to expect $5,100 on a $100 investment in an offshore program in about nine months. More than 10,000 people were defrauded of more than $20 million since 1994. No one received any return.

Omega was headed by Clyde D. Hood of Mattoon, who was a close friend of Turner's. Hood has pleaded guilty to a lead role in Omega, and testified against Turner.

Turner contended that he didn't know about the Omega scheme and therefore wasn't criminally responsible for his role in a series of transactions with money Hood obtained through Omega. Turner testified in his own defense.

-----




RMN is an RA production.

Articles In This Thread

Dubya Tonight, OT&T Tomorrow
hobie -- Tuesday, 27-Feb-2001 09:39:39
Dark Angel / Light Weight
vonMonke -- Tuesday, 27-Feb-2001 22:38:26
Re: Dark Angel / Light Weight
hobie -- Wednesday, 28-Feb-2001 04:39:04
Re: Dark Angel / Light Weight
vonMonke -- Wednesday, 28-Feb-2001 08:22:51
I Think My Knee Jerked A Little
vonMonke -- Wednesday, 28-Feb-2001 09:00:38
Re: Dark Angel / Light Weight
hobie -- Wednesday, 28-Feb-2001 10:44:03
OT&T: McNabb likely to defend, Fed expert witness
hobie -- Thursday, 1-Mar-2001 14:36:31
McNabb to Defend in Mattoon OT&T Case
hobie -- Saturday, 17-Mar-2001 18:21:31
More Guilty Pleas in Mattoon
hobie -- Sunday, 25-Mar-2001 12:37:39
2 More Plead Guilty in Mattoon OT&T Case
hobie -- Friday, 6-Apr-2001 17:03:51
Clyde & Pat Hood Plead Guilty in OT&T Case
hobie -- Wednesday, 11-Apr-2001 17:35:37
OT&T Case Moves to Springfield Courthouse
hobie -- Friday, 13-Apr-2001 14:22:57
11th OT&T guilty plea, jury selection starts Tues.
hobie -- Saturday, 28-Apr-2001 05:38:38
OT&T Trial Goes Back to Urbana, 3 More Pleas
hobie -- Thursday, 3-May-2001 08:04:39
OT&T Defendant Speaks of Government Threats
hobie -- Wednesday, 9-May-2001 16:11:38
OT&T: MICHAEL KODOSKY SEEKS HONEST MEDIA ATTENTION
hobie -- Thursday, 10-May-2001 11:37:40
Re: OT&T: MICHAEL KODOSKY - CHANGE OF PLAN
hobie -- Friday, 11-May-2001 16:56:04
OT&T: Continuance Delays Mattoon Case
hobie -- Friday, 25-May-2001 04:39:29
OT&T: Calif Woman Goes on Trial in Omega Case
hobie -- Monday, 11-Jun-2001 14:56:30
OT&T: Diamond Trial Continues, 'Quadrillions'
hobie -- Tuesday, 19-Jun-2001 15:43:29
OT&T: Investors Testify, Say Still Trust Diamond
hobie -- Tuesday, 26-Jun-2001 13:38:10
OT&T: Diamond Found Guilty on All Eight Counts
hobie -- Friday, 6-Jul-2001 10:45:06
OT&T: 2 More Plead Guilty, Final Trial Begins Wed.
hobie -- Tuesday, 10-Jul-2001 17:47:09
OT&T: Hung Jury / Mistrial, in Turner Case
hobie -- Friday, 27-Jul-2001 15:44:12
OT&T: Turner Found Guilty on 1 Charge in Retrial
hobie -- Saturday, 25-Aug-2001 01:55:25

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AN EXPLANATION OF THE FACTIONS