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Release Of Ex-Merrill Lynch Brokers A Blow To Enron Task Force?

The court-ordered release on bail of former Merrill Lynch bankers Daniel Bayly and Robert Furst may be a blow to the Enron Task Force, which got the convictions.

The court-ordered release on bail of former Merrill Lynch bankers Daniel Bayly and Robert Furst may be a blow to the Enron Task Force, which won the convictions. It may also result in the reversal of those convictions being reversed and the dismissal of charges, The New York Times reports, citing the defense attorneys in the case. On Thursday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ordered the release of the two men – similar to a ruling in March for a third former Merrill banker, William Fuhs – pending the outcome of the appeal. The duo have been in prison since last year, after Bayly was sentenced to 30 months and Furst to 37 months. But defense lawyers are saying the release may be a sign that the court is none to happy with the way the task force, which won convictions on charges that the Merrill men had fraudulently inflated Enron profits with a barge deal, tried the case. “It appears that the appellate courts will take a very careful look at what the task force is doing  for these trials, and will not hesitate to reverse convictions if they think the task force overstepped,” attorney David Spears, who represented Fuhs, told the Times.

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