The trial of HealthSouth Corp. founder and former CEO Richard Scrushy will not begin Jan. 5, as previously scheduled, to give prosecutors and Scrushy's defense team more time to prepare, according to a judge's ruling last week. A new trial start has not been set, but a hearing will be held Dec. 9 in Birmingham, Ala., on progress in the case. Scrushy was indicted earlier this month on 85 counts of conspiracy, fraud and money laundering for allegedly leading a far-reaching scheme that inflated HealthSouth's earnings by more than $2.7 billion since 1996. Meanwhile, Scrushy said Thomas Sjoblom of Chadbourne & Park, Washington, who has represented Scrushy since April, and Sjoblom's partner Abbe David Lowell would defend him in the upcoming trial. Donald Watkins of Birmingham, Scrushy's longtime friend and counsel, will continue to be a principal counselor and adviser to Scrushy and the legal team. Sjoblom has been a Securities and Exchange Commission trial attorney and a federal criminal prosecutor and now heads the securities litigation and regulatory enforcement practice at Chadbourne. Lowell, who heads the firm's white collar defense practice, was named one of the nation's 10 best trial lawyers by the National Law Journal and served as the chief attorney for the House Democrats during impeachment proceedings against former President Clinton. Also joining Scrushy's defense team is Arthur Leach, a private consultant who was chief of asset forfeiture for the U.S. attorney's office in Georgia from 1989 to 2002. -- by Julie Piotrowski
Scrushy's trial delayed; defense team announced
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