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Juror Lied to Get onto Jury
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On Wednesday, a woman from the Bronx admitted that she lied about her criminal and legal background so she would be able to be on the jury for a high-profile tax-shelter fraud case in 2011. The woman in question is that of Catherine Conrad. She said that she did not mention details about her life so she could obtain a spot on the jury for the trial of Paul Daugerdas. Daugerdas is the former leader of Jenkens & Gilchrist’s office in Chicago. The trial also involved Denis Field, who is the former chief executive of the accounting firm of BDO Seidman.  Both of the defendants have requested a new trial because of the woman’s misconduct.

Conrad testified with limited immunity on Wednesday, saying that she was still an unbiased juror even though she omitted some pertinent information about her life. Conrad did not appear for a hearing in Manhattan federal court Wednesday, causing her to be arrested, and then invoked her Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate herself before she received immunity.


“You didn’t do your civic duty, did you?,” asked Chris Gair, one of Daugerdas’ lawyers.

“Rendering a jury verdict in an unbiased fashion, I certainly did,” Conrad said.

Back in May of 2011, the two defendants and two others had been convicted of criminal charges. The conviction came after a trial that lasted ten weeks and then close to two weeks of jury deliberation. Deliberations had to be restarted after a sick juror had to be replaced with an alternate.

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Court documents allege that Conrad lied about her life during the questioning of potential jurors by leaving out the fact that she has a law degree, that she has been suspended from practicing law since 2007, and that she has a criminal record. The problems were brought up by the lawyers for the defendants after Conrad sent a letter to the prosecutors on the case. The letter praised their efforts and it discussed much of the deliberations by the jury.

“I told them we have cats if you’re allergic stay outside,” Conrad said.

Gair asked Conrad if she had been arrested for stealing greeting cards. Her response was, “No, it was a bag of shrimp.” Then Gair asked Conrad if she was ever charged with assault during an arrest for driving under the influence. Her answer was, “I believe punched the cop in the stomach. That was dismissed.” Gair then asked if Conrad’s husband was charged with unlawfully carrying a weapon back in the 90s. Conrad’s response was, “That was in Kentucky in 1976 when he tried to board an airplane with a gun. I was 10 years old then.”


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