Stanford Trial Goes To The Jury Today

Attorneys in the Ponzi scheme trial of Houston financier R. Allen Stanford deliver their closing statements to the jury this morning.

The government and defense teams will each have two hours to present their closing arguments. The jury will begin its deliberation following a brief lunch break.

Marc Mukasey heads the white collar criminal defense section at the law firm of Bracewell & Giuliani. He says the defense attorneys’ decision not to call Stanford as a witness could hurt their client.

“The defense attorneys, in their opening statement, promised that Allen Stanford would testify. In my view, that’s a rookie mistake. You cannot make a promise to the jury in an opening statement that you cannot follow through upon in your closing.”

Another big factor Mukasey says is likely to weigh with the jury is how much they’re willing to credit the testimony of James Davis, former chief financial officer for Stanford’s companies. Davis is a cooperating witness for the government. He faces up to thirty years in prison for his role in the alleged $7 billion Ponzi scheme. Defense attorneys argue Davis himself was the architect of the fraud.

Bio photo of Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Business Reporter

Andrew Schneider joined KUHF in January 2011, after more than a decade as a print reporter for The Kiplinger Letter...