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Federal prosecutor opposes funds for Conour, raises concern over assets

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A federal prosecutor says resigned personal injury attorney William Conour should not receive $10,000 from a court fund for living expenses. A court filing objecting to Conour’s request raises concern that he might try to liquidate assets the FBI inventoried.

Conour, who faces a wire fraud charge alleging he stole more than $4.5 million from numerous clients’ trust accounts over a number of years, filed a motion through his public defender this month asking for $10,000 to pay more than $7,000 in claimed monthly living expenses. The government opposes the motion to distribute the money from a court deposit fund established for victim compensation.

Chief Judge Richard Young of the District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has yet to set a hearing on the request, in which Conour claims monthly living expenses of $7,040, including $3,500 for car payments.

Special U.S. attorney Jason Bohm responded to Conour’s request in a court filing that argued Conour previously told the court that his living expenses were less than one-quarter what he now claimed, and that “the United States does not believe $3,500 per month in car payments is reasonable or consistent with an individual being provided counsel at public expense.”

Rather, Conour should petition the court to sell assets including extensive collections of art, wine and champagne, Bohm argued. He noted that as a condition of bond, Conour was ordered not to sell or transfer inventoried assets without court approval.

“Given the defendant’s inconsistent claims, the United States believes the court should make an ‘appropriate inquiry into the veracity’ of the defendant’s financial condition,” the government’s response said. It includes in a footnote:  

“The United States remains concerned that the defendant may attempt to liquidate all his assets leaving little for possible restitution for the victims. Thus, should the defendant ask to liquidate any assets, the United States would request an accounting from the defendant of any disposition of assets.”

Conour initially set aside $100,000 for a fund to reimburse victims and to pay his legal expenses. After hiring and dismissing two sets of defense attorneys, he deposited the remaining $39,279 with the court, from which he was provided $35,000 in October to retain new counsel.

In January, he requested a public defender, and Michael J. Donahoe of Indiana Federal Community Defenders Inc. was appointed. Young at that time ordered Conour to return money to the court fund, but it’s unclear how much remains.

“While not reflected on the Court’s docket sheet, the United States believes that the defendant did return approximately $16,000 to the Court’s Deposit Fund,” Bohm wrote.

Donahoe filed a motion for release of funds in which he claimed that Conour’s sole income was $2,140 per month from Social Security, while his more than $7,000 in monthly expenses included car payments of $1,700 for himself and $1,800 for his ex-wife, Jennifer Conour, as provided in a divorce decree issued in Kosciusko County.

Conour’s filing also notes he recently incurred about $3,000 in expenses for repairs to his Carmel home that is for sale.

Conour “believes that the requested funds will be sufficient to cover his expenses through April 2013,” Donahoe wrote.

Conour’s trial is scheduled for Sept. 9.

 

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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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