Monday, March 2, 2009

Dan Marino's sentence upheld

The 2d circuit court of appeals has denied an appeal by former Bayou principal Dan Marino of the 20 year sentence he received for his role in that fiasco.

The 2d circuit noted, parenthetically, that the trial judge might have been a bit more harsh than she had to be, but she was within the range of her discretion on such a matter.

We pause to note that we might ourselves have given greater weight than apparently did the district court to Marino's plight — his almost complete deafness and accompanying sense of loneliness, his lack of self-esteem, his bouts with cancer, his apparent fear of and deference to Israel — and his assistance to the government detailed in its “5K1 Letter” (noting his aid to the government in understanding the fraud, his immediate contrition and taking of responsibility upon discovery, and his contribution to the guilty pleas of his co-conspirators). But it is not for us to substitute our judgment for that of the district court, whose sentence was procedurally and substantively proper.

Jeffrey Skilling of Enron infamy, had somewhat better luck recently with his appeal. The circuit judges there found that the sentencing had been improper, and Skilling will get a new hearing. These things do have a lottery-like aspect to them.

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