Corrine Brown to be Sentenced Nov. 16; Request for New Trial Denied

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Former Congresswoman Corrine Brown’s request for a new trial has been denied.  Brown was convicted on fraud and tax charges in May but her lawyers filed motions arguing that evidence against her did not support a guilty verdict, and that the verdict should be overturned because the judge improperly replaced a juror for saying the Holy Spirit told him Brown was innocent.

Corrigan address his removal of the juror saying:

“Had [the]juror …simply stated to his fellow jurors that he was praying for guidance during the deliberations, that would not have been problematic. … But that’s not what happened. …[He] announced at the beginning of deliberations that he was following instructions from an outside source, which is not permitted.”

Addressing Brown’s motion to throw out the verdict because of insufficient evidence, the judge said “reasonable inferences of [Brown’s] guilt” could be made from the testimony that came in.

Brown’s lawyer, James Smith, focused her defense on the fact that she placed her complete trust in her chief-of-staff, Simmons, who Smith said used his unfettered access to her business affairs and bank accounts to enrich himself and One Door charity president Carla Wiley.

The judge set November 16 as the day for Brown’s sentencing.  Wiley and Simmons, who both pled guilty and testified against Brown. will be sentenced the day before.

Brown is expected to appeal the verdict.