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The Champion

June 2018 , Page 61 

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We, the Jury: Jurors and LinkedIn

By Thaddeus Hoffmeister

Read more We, the Jury columns.

In 2016 a jury convicted Talman Harris of several charges related to penny stock fraud in federal district court in Cleveland, Ohio.1 His crimes stemmed from a scheme in which he, along with co-conspirators, received undisclosed commissions for recommending shares of companies run by Zirk de Maison.

Harris subsequently appealed his conviction to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, raising several issues. This article will examine only one — extraneous influence on a juror. On appeal, Harris asserted that the trial judge abused his discretion by failing to hold a Remmer-type hearing after he informed the court about improper influence on a juror via LinkedIn, the social networking site for professionals.

In Remmer v. United States, the petitioner discovered post-trial that some unknown person had contacted the jury foreman and told him that he could profit by returning a favorable verdict for the petitioner.2 The prosecution, through the FBI, investigated the claim and discov

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