Barber Attorney Vaughn Knight's Case Remains in Limbo as Conner Eldridge Considers Next Move

by Mark Friedman  on Monday, Jun. 23, 2014 12:00 am  

One of the charges against Knight involved bankruptcy fraud. The U.S. attorney’s office argued that Knight knew as far back as 2008 that Barber was eventually going to have to file for bankruptcy, which he did in July 2009.

Some of the emails the government used to support its case were “largely in the context of Knight negotiating on Barber’s behalf,” Holmes wrote. “An attorney should be able to freely negotiate on his client’s behalf without being inhibited by the fear that the issues raised during such negotiations might later expose him to criminal liability.”

These days, Knight continues to practice law at his firm in Fayetteville, where he handles general corporate law, real estate transactions, estate planning, commercial litigation and agricultural law, according to his website.

“Vaughn Knight is a good man, and he is a good lawyer,” Matthews said. “I do not believe for a minute that he had any criminal intent or that he violated the criminal law in any way.”

Eldridge, though, sees it differently.

“We think the jury got it right,” he said. The jury “deliberated and reached a verdict of all counts, and we think that speaks for itself.”

Other Defendants

The sentencing dates are coming up for Barber’s other criminal associates. James Van Doren pleaded guilty in August 2013 to a single count of money laundering for helping Barber hide money from his creditors. His sentencing date is set for Aug. 18.

Jeff Whorton, who pleaded guilty in August to conspiring with Barber, is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 20. Brandon Rains pleaded guilty in October to a single count of making a fraudulent representation to the FBI. He has an Aug. 21 sentencing date.



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