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Ex-Countrymark CEO’s bid to reduce sentence denied

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A federal judge has denied former Countrymark CEO David Swanson’s request that she vacate or reduce his 12-year prison sentence stemming from his 2002 conviction for wire fraud, money laundering and tax evasion.

The 68-year-old former financial executive argued during a March hearing that the government had failed to disclose evidence favorable to him and that he was denied his Sixth Amendment right to effective counsel.

But, in a 44-page ruling issued May 25, Judge Sarah Evans Barker picked apart Swanson’s arguments, including that his attorneys—James Voyles and Jennifer Lukemeyer—were derelict in not seeking a mistrial after the government presented its case.

“We hold that Swanson was not prejudiced by his trial counsel’s failure to seek a mistrial because such a request would have been denied as lacking any legal authority,” Barker wrote.

Swanson, an inmate at a Duluth, Minn., federal prison, was sentenced in March 2003 for stealing $2.7 million from the Indianapolis-based agricultural cooperative in the 1990s.


 

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