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The Client From Hell

The world knows him as Moussaoui, the would be 9/11 terrorist.   But for those of us like Norm Pattis who handle criminal or civil litigation, Moussaoui is no different from your run-of-the-mill client from hell, that client who decides to testify and proceeds to sabotage his case.  (For more details on Moussaoui's day in court, in all its comic glory, see this piece from The Washington Post).

As Pattis describes, Moussaoui was a disaster:

"[He] all but confessed to the unsolved murder of Jimmy Hoffa. He and shoe-bomber Richard Reid were supposed to hijack yet another plane and run it into the White House, he testified. The claim smacks of grandiose self-delusion. Richard Reid, arrested after trying to light a bomb in his shoe aboard a transatlantic flight in December 2001 is an incongruous figure -- call him the Forrest Gump of international terrorism."

Now Moussaoui's lawyers face the task of discrediting their own client.  Pattis concludes with this:

"The jury may well vote to execute Moussaoui, but will that be because he is the terrorist he pretended to be on the stand, or because they simply want to put this deluded liar out of his misery?"

This is one jury that I would definitely want to hear interviewed after the trial concludes.

Posted by Carolyn Elefant on March 29, 2006 at 01:09 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)


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