Ex-Palmetto State Bank CEO files for new trial based on Murdaugh trial
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The former CEO of Palmetto State Bank is once again requesting a new trial. This time based on Alex Murdaugh’s testimony in his murder trial last month.
The motion filed Thursday asserts that Russell Laffitte should be granted a new trial based on Murdaugh’s testimony that Laffitte was unaware of the financial crimes and the pair didn’t conspire together.
“Russell Laffitte never conspired with me to do anything,” Murdaugh testified on Feb. 23.
In the testimony, Murdaugh said that Laffitte was not a knowing and willful participant in a criminal conspiracy.
Laffitte’s lawyers argue that the government cannot sustain the burden to prove he was a knowing party of the conspiracy.
“Because Mr. Murdaugh’s undisputed testimony, given under oath, provides new evidence that Mr. Laffitte did not enter into a criminal conspiracy and had no such knowledge or mens rea to commit any of the Counts with which he is charged, Mr. Laffitte is entitled to a new trial,” the motion states.
A U.S. district judge denied Laffitte’s previous motion for a new trial on Monday.
The first motion, denied by Judge Richard Gergel, was filed by a new team of lawyers for Laffitte.
Despite Laffitte’s new legal team asserting that the original team had been ineffective when considering the replacement of two jurors nine hours into deliberations the court concluded that they had consented to the procedures of the court.
A motion to withdraw as counsel was filed Monday by Laffitte’s original counsel, Bart Daniel, Matt Austin and Josh Meyers, of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP.
The lawyers cited Laffitte’s “substantial failure to fulfill his financial obligations” to the legal team during and after the trial.
Laffitte’s current legal team is Mark Moore and Michael Parente of Nexen Pruet, LLC.
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