UPDATE: LaRoque's Hearing Over New Trial Continued

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The hearing over whether former state lawmaker Stephen LaRoque will get a new hearing on two counts or 12 counts was continued until November 14.

The federal judge told the court that he met with LaRoque's attorney and the U.S. attorney for more than an hour this morning, discussing what the judge called an "exceedingly complex legal issue." All parties agreed to take more time to study the legal issue and return to court in a little more than a month.

The Kinston Republican was convicted in June on 12 counts including theft, fraud and money laundering. A judge granted a new trial on two of the 12 counts against the former representative after finding out Juror #3 had done outside research online. However, LaRoque's attorney argues he should get a new trial on all 12 counts.



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Former state lawmaker Stephen LaRoque is due back in a federal court Thursday.

The Kinston man was convicted on 12 counts of theft, fraud and money laundering in June.

A judge granted a new trial on two of the 12 counts against the former representative after finding out Juror #3 had done outside research online.

LaRoque's attorneys argue they have an affidavit from Juror #3 explaining the juror's mental processes and how the research related to the verdict, and that the research undermined the entire defense.

The U.S. attorney says more than a century worth of caselaw precedents have federal rules of evidence that explain the court may not "receive a juror's affidavit or evidence of a juror's statement ... On the effect of anything on that juror's or another juror's vote."

Thursday's motion hearing may determine if LaRoque will be granted a new trial on two or 12 counts.


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