Better late than never, I finally catch up with the big news story of the day. Don Siegelman will be released on bond tomorrow morning, pending appeal of his conviction.
The [11th Circuit Court] judges wrote that Siegelman met both requirements for an appeal bond: He is not a flight risk and his appeal raises a substantial question of law or fact likely to result in reversal or an order for a new trial.
“After thorough review of this complex and protracted record, we conclude Siegelman has satisfied the criteria set out in the statute, and has specifically met his burden of showing that his appeal raises substantial questions of law or fact,” the judges wrote.
The court did not elaborate on what those questions were. Siegelman’s lawyers, among other issues, have argued prosecutors didn’t prove that Siegelman and Scrushy struck a “quid pro quo” deal to swap the money for the appointment.
The court denied Richard Scrushy’s request for release. His attorney had no details, but I’d guess he’s considered a flight risk. He certainly has the financial wherewithal to take off for parts unknown, and his unscheduled yacht cruise last year didn’t win him any points with the Feds. [UPDATE: Danny confirms my guess here.]
I’m glad Siegelman is being released. He’s no danger to society, and I can’t see him running. It’s a waste of taxpayers’ money to keep him in prison while his conviction is appealed.