Court Round Up

Indiana: Tax charges against man who sued over suicide
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Federal prosecutors have filed tax fraud charges against a northern Indiana businessman who blames an Internal Revenue Service investigation for his wife’s suicide.

The 23-count indictment against 59-year-old James Simon of Huntertown was filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in South Bend. It accuses Simon or his family of receiving nearly $1.8 million from overseas businesses but not reporting it as income.

Defense attorney Anthony LaSpada says Simon is innocent and has been put through an ordeal by the government.

Simon sued the federal government in February over his wife’s suicide three days after IRS agents raided their home in 2007.

The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne reports Simon has been involved in telecommunications and satellite companies over the past 15 years, including businesses located in Cyprus and Gibraltar.

Connecticut: Jury awards man $1.3 million in rape lawsuit
MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut jury has awarded nearly $1.3 million to a man who says he was raped when he was a teenager by an equestrian teacher at a Portland horseback-riding school in the late 1980s.

The jury at Middletown Superior Court awarded the compensatory damages Thursday to Andrew Srb (SERB’), who’s now 37, and also directed that he be awarded punitive damages to be decided by the judge.

Srb sued the teacher, 53-year-old Robert Johnson, in June 2008, a few months after he first brought the allegations to police. Criminal charges couldn’t be pursued because the statute of limitations expired.

Johnson said the verdict was “unbelievable,” vowed to appeal and denied being a homosexual.

Srb says he went public with his name to help heal himself and help others.

Virginia: Disbarred lawyer gets 30 years for defrauding clients
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — A judge in Norfolk has sentenced a disbarred attorney to 30 years in federal prison for defrauding clients and friends out of more than $8 million.

Forty-four-year-old Troy A. Titus wept in court Thursday as he tried to explain himself in front of U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson and a courtroom filled with family and friends.

A federal jury in December convicted Titus of 33 felonies, finding that he had operated a Ponzi scheme that cost his victims around $8 million in losses. The government now says the total fraud amounted to nearly $12 million.

Iowa: Man accused of murder wants evidence thrown out
DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — An attorney for a Dubuque man accused of killing one man and wounding another during a fight wants a judge to throw out evidence in the case.

Michael Mayton faces several charges, including first-degree murder and attempted murder. He’s accused of fatally stabbing David Tate and injuring Richard Schramm last August.

During an interrogation, Mayton told police “I’m done,” and his attorney says investigators should have stopped questioning him. David Staudt argued during a hearing on Thursday that all statements after that point, including blood and DNA samples, should be thrown out.

Prosecutors say Mayton’s statement was in reference to a specific line of questioning.

The judge is expected to issue a ruling this week. Mayton’s trial is set for May 17.