Barry Jewell's Road to Indictment

by Mark Friedman  on Monday, Mar. 31, 2008 12:00 am  

Jewell was accused of conspiring with Moser to unlawfully gain control of a Little Rock software company called Scanning Technologies Inc. by using more than $1.5 million from their law firm's client trust account.

Jewell and Moser also were accused of using client trust funds to pay almost $106,000 in child support to Jewell's ex-wife and $500,000 of client money for the firm's general operating expenses at a time when the account had insufficient assets with which to pay clients.

The indictment also said the $160,000 taken from Jewell should be forfeited.

Jewell said the indictment only occurred when the government failed to establish a connection between the seized money and Moser's crimes.

"The government had no basis whatsoever for seizing these funds in that action, but rather than release the funds to Jewell, the government manufactured the allegations contained in the Indictment," Jewell's attorney at the time, Fran Hickman of North Little Rock, said in a May 2007 motion.

As of May 2007, Jewell had spent more than $37,000 in legal fees attempting to recover the seized money.

The U.S. Attorney's Office said it hasn't acted in bad faith or with vindictiveness, according to a June 2007 motion by U.S. attorney Karen Whatley.

Whatley said the evidence shows Jewell's actions resulted in the money being seized.

But on March 6, U.S. District Court Judge J. Leon Holmes agreed with Jewell and ordered the $160,000 to be returned to Jewell, ruling the pension funds are protected from seizure.

The next battle for Jewell will be the criminal trial in September.

Jewell "still keeps hanging in there, fighting the IRS every day over what amounts to frivolous complaints," Perroni said. "And [Jewell] has been successful in beating them off at every juncture."



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