Tom DeLay indictment: charge bargaining in the fine print?

Norm Pattis at Crime & Federalism thinks House Majority Leader Tom DeLay will plead guilty to the conspiracy charge filed against him today:

So why am I so sure he’ll plead? A line in the indictment notes that his lawyer waived the statute of limitations on the conspiracy charge during grand jury proceedings. Why would a competent lawyer waive a complete defense? Because worse was on the way if he did not.
Initiates know the practice as charge-bargaining. You see a funnel cloud barreling at you and you ask your local prosecutor, quietly, “on what charges are you willing to take my client if he pleads?” I suspect DeLay will enter a plea late in the year.
DeLay gets time to step aside. House Republicans get a chance to regroup and spin the cancer out of their midst.

I’ll go look for a copy of the indictment online before I say much more. (Update: Found a copy in PDF form at FindLaw.com … check the bottom of page 3)

Comments are closed.