Tag Archives: paul bergrin

Paul Bergrin Given 6 Life Sentences

Paul Bergrin

Paul Bergrin

Been busy around these parts, and haven’t gotten to keep up on the blog, but this warranted a note. Paul Bergrin, former prosecutor and high-profile defense attorney, was sentenced to life in prison earlier today. Specifically, he was given concurrent life sentences on 6 of the counts, and sentences on the other convictions as well. One life sentence is sufficient, as the Federal system does not allow for parole under such circumstances. Bergrin intends to appeal the convictions.

Paul Bergrin Sentencing Set for Monday

His motions for a new trial have been denied, and Paul Bergrin’s sentencing is set for Monday. He faces up to life in prison for his numerous convictions. Apparently, there will be a request to continue the sentencing on another date, so the case may not be resolved tomorrow. Note, the article states his appeals were denied, but such motions are distinct from appeals. He will still have the right to file direct appeal after the sentencing.

Paul Bergrin Guilty on All Counts

Paul Bergrin Illustration

Paul Bergrin Illustration

The verdict is in, and Attorney Paul Bergrin has been convicted of all 23 counts he was facing, including murder, racketeering, and promoting prostitution. Bergrin, a former prosecutor and later hotshot defense attorney, represented himself at trial. He previously got a hung jury on a couple of counts, before the new judge agreed to try them all together. He faces life in prison for his convictions.


Paul Bergrin Prosecution Rests, Defense Case Begins Today

Paul Bergrin Illustration

Paul Bergrin Illustration

The government has rested their case, after more than six weeks of testimony and more than fifty witnesses against Paul Bergrin. Mr. Bergrin, who had been a successful trial attorney prior to his charges, is defending himself against dozens of counts including murder, attempted murder, and racketeering. He has listed multiple witnesses, and his defense case is expected to take weeks, as well.

Several of the witnesses he has listed are also felons or accused criminals, and the court has arranged for standby attorneys to be present in the even that one of the witnesses needs counsel. If his witnesses invoke their 5th Amendment rights, it can cut both ways for Mr. Bergrin. There may be some witnesses that he wants to speak to present certain evidence to the jury. However, other witnesses may look guilty if they invoke their rights, and he may be able to create doubt of his own guilt if the other witnesses refuse to answer the tough questions. Northjersey.com has been covering this trial since the beginning, and has a good collection of stories detailing the progress of the case.


Paul Bergerin Trial Underway

New Jersey attorney Paul Bergrin’s second trial for murder, plus racketeering and other charges, is underway. Mr. Bergrin continues to represent himself, and vehemently denied the charges in his opening statement. The prosecutor had gotten the new judge on the case to try 26 counts at the same time, and came out firing in his opening statement, as well. He is alleging that Bergrin was using his practice as a racketeering enterprise, and calls Bergrin a “drug dealer, a pimp, and a murderer.” The primary charges are for murder, alleging that Mr. Bergrin arranged for hits on key witnesses against his clients. He also allegedly was involved in drug trafficking and running a call-girl ring.


Police: Woman Arrested For Spreading Facebook Photos Of Undercover Cop


Melissa Walthall mug shot

Police: Woman Arrested For Spreading Facebook Photos Of Undercover Cop.  This is fascinating…

Apparently Melissa Walthall has been charged with ‘Retaliation’ for posting the Facebook photo of an undercover officer that testified against her friend.  My gut instinct is that publishing a photo that was previously published on a social media site is highly unlikely to be criminal behavior.  Additionally, while an undercover officer’s identity is should be kept secret, law enforcement’s ability to punish someone for revealing that identity is likely abrogated when they are already publicly identified.  Such identification can occur by testifying in open court, which is apparently what happened here.  That is, it’s not a secret if the guy states his name on the record, and in public, as most court proceedings are.

I actually had to look up the statute for retaliation, as it is not frequently utilized.  My best guess is that agents are proceeding on a theory under section (b) that her conduct threatens bodily injury against a witness who had testified.  I straight reading of the statute would suggest this is an inappropriate application: it appears the statute indicates that the conduct should be threatening.  Disclosure of the identity, which isn’t a private fact if the officer had already been publicly revealed, would have to be coupled some knowledge or intent that it would lead to bodily injury.  That’s what prosecutors are alleging in the Paul Bergrin murder case.  Disclosure itself does not likely constitute a “threat”.  Additionally, I doubt that this could be a “disclosure”, due to the fact that he already testified in public, and because he posted the picture on Facebook.

Accused killer-attorney accuses prosecutors of malfeasance: Paul Bergrin update

Paul Bergrin

Paul Bergrin’s  attorneys recently filed a letter to the the judge  requesting a hearing on their claim accusing the government of leaning on witness to coerce them to testify positively against him.  He represented himself months ago in his first murder trial, and received a hung jury.  Since then, the judge was ordered off the case, and prosecutors are trying to get the new judge to try more of his charges at the same time (where the murder charge had been severed).  The new trial is tentatively scheduled for next month.

Bergrin’s attorneys are now asking for a hearing on the matter, which could result in testimony being thrown out.  Even if they are unsuccessful in this effort, they get additional opportunity to prepare their defense and cross examination of these witnesses.  Prosecutors have dismissed the request as a chance for the Defense to score a deposition. 

Bergrin was formerly a hotshot defense attorney (and former prosecutor, himself).  The most serious of these charges are that he participated murders by conduct such as giving names to conspirators and suggesting they should be elimated to help his case.  The government’s case featured jailhouse snitches and other witnesses with significant reliability issues, independent of the coercion that is now alleged.  The case has seen some heated animosity in the courtroom, leading up to the previous judge’s ouster.  I haven’t found anymore recent articles, but I will post them here as they come up.