North Birmingham Bribery Case

Influence Peddling in DC

Why exactly did Balch & Bingham retain, as reported by The American Lawyer,  “W. Warren Hamel, chair of Venable’s investigations and white-collar defense group in Baltimore, to represent it in the government’s corruption probe?”

As we wrote  at the end of August when the corrupt Star Chamber was formed,   sources told us legal representatives of  a Balch partner were “allegedly vigorously trying to prevent any indictment or prosecution through direct channels in Washington, D.C.”

Two indictments later, that effort obviously failed.

According to the The American Lawyer, W. Warren Hammel served as “chief of the environmental crimes and enforcement office unit at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland from 1997 to 2001.”

That is the same U.S. Attorney’s Office that Deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein worked as when he was an Assistant U.S. Attorney from 1997 to 2001.

Same time. Same office.

But the difference here, unlike many political nominees in Alabama,  Rosenstein is known as a man of absolute integrity.

Balch partners may have thought they were immune until the federal indictments were handed down last month by a Grand Jury and to be prosecuted by the Office of U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town.

Likewise, Balch may still possibly believe they can allegedly trample the Civil Rights of Burt Newsome with impunity, and allegedly stack all the cards against him in a secretive Star Chamber without restraint.

But the times are a-changin. Even Hammel’s long time connections understand.


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