Nacchio Lawyer: Ethnic Bias Led to Conviction

Maureen Mahoney is pulling out all the stops. Joe Nacchio’s lawyer, in an appeal to the Supreme Court, says her client deserves a new trial due in part to “ethnic bias.”

So, defrauding Qwest Communications International Inc.(Q) investors of millions of dollars had nothing to do with Nacchio’s conviction – it was because he’s Italian.


Seriously, that’s what Mahoney is claiming in yet another attempt to keep her high-profile client from serving six years in minimum-security prison. She also told the Supreme Court expert testimony was excluded from Nacchio’s trial and questions over instructions to the jury.

But the best argument came when Mahoney wrote in a court petition that Nacchio “was accosted on the streets, depicted by the Denver Post alongside North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il, and even the trial judge saw ‘no reason why this man who grew up, the son of Italian immigrants … in New Jersey and New York,’ should ever have come out here to Colorado.”

We can’t decide if Mahoney’s newest explanation is brilliant or desperate. Either way, something is working. She’s kept Nacchio out of the pokey so far with claims of skin cancer and overall unfair treatment at trial.

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