Government’s Case Against Miami Lawyer ‘Much Harder’ After Dropped Charge, Say Former Officials

By Brian Monroe

A federal judge's decision to drop a money laundering charge against a Miami attorney accused of vetting dirty money will increase the burden of proof for prosecutors, say former officials. U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke said Monday that prosecutors could not try Benedict Kuehne for conspiracy to commit money laundering because it impinged upon an exception provided to lawyers that exempts fees given by clients of criminal liability. The exemption is intended to preserve a person's right to legal representation. If the judge interpreted the law the way the government suggested, then the "exemption for such transactions would amount to...