Paying The Freight (Updated @ 12n)
How costly the criminal defense of the Swann Street housemates was has long been a topic of conversation. Washingtonian Magazine’s Harry Jaffe ran the numbers during the trial and came up with a figure of around $2.5 million.
Some legal insiders thought that aggregate figure may have been a little on the high side; the former defendants may have worked out flat fees for their respective firms rather than pay the hefty hourly rates.
And Joe Price’s costs may have been lower than assumed: His counsel Bernie Grimm was mostly a one man band in the courtroom, as if playing playing second chair to the armada of talent from Schertler & Onorato, who we’re told ran the show. Zaborsky counsel Tom Connolly traveled light too, aided in the courtroom by just one other attorney, Amy Richardson.
The threesome’s resources will now be devoted to fighting the wrongful death civil suit waged by Kathy Wone on behalf of Robert’s estate. The defense team may be doing the bidding of insurance companies that wrote homeowner policies for their former home on Swann. Still, checks may have to be cut and if a jury goes against the threesome in the civil case, there is the $20 million judgement. How to pay?
Rich, an experienced executive recruiter (headhunter) weighs in on future job prospects that may help the threesome pay the freight.
“The future looks brighter than what most of us think for our boys. I have thought a lot about what the prospects of their employment can be. First of all allow some qualifiers here:
I’ve been in Human Resources/Recruitment for thirty years focused on Corporate HR and Executive Search. I have worked extensively in Legal (Placing Law Firm Partners and their Practice Groups) and with Marketing professionals. So, my opinion carries a bit more weight than just another theory.
The most practical next step for the defendants is to get out from under the Civil Suit, change their names, possibly, and move to the house in Florida. DC is over for them. A new life to rebuild in another state. It’s easier living this way.
As for their individual employment prospects, my opinion, which is for the most part very sound, may differ from many of you.
Joe will work again. Sorry folks. And, he will do exceedingly well, especially on Florida cost of living. If he and the other guys can pick up Spanish, which is very easy to do on the cheap in Miami, they will do even better. Especially, Victor. More on him later.
Joe can join the Miami Office of a national firm and assume an, “Of Counsel,” role. Not a partner. Make over $200k per year minimum and be a great, “Backseat,” subject matter expert. According to Martindale-Hubbell, (International Law Directory – one of the most popular and extensive sources of information on the global legal profession) there are 133 National Law Firms in Miami alone. This does not include nearby Ft. Lauderdale. There are hundreds more small regional/local firms, that will take him in a heartbeat with his big firm experience.
Joe can also hang his own shingle. In addition to securing new business, he can go to old clients who liked him and warm himself to them again. They will remember the good feelings they had and where their loyalties were at one time. Since they were not caught up in the wmrw machinations, they will base their feelings on past experience with Joe and not on all the hoopla the case generated.
Do not forget kids, these clients have not been living on this site, like the rest of us. I have tried to engage dozens of folks in this story from all around the country, and not one person even heard of Robert Wone, yet alone the case and story. We are a unique group and a precious few.
Actually, I also have a lot of experience with former offenders rebuilding their lives, as well. I know all too well the many moving parts these boys will have to execute and endure to rebuild their lives. Since they have proven to be resourceful, I’m confident they will succeed, whether I believe their story or not.
As for Victor, it’s much easier. Marketing is hot in Miami right now and the “Got Milk” campaign,” is quite successful and still popular. If Victor picked up Spanish, a very easy language to learn, he will do extraordinary well, as Miami is the gateway for Central and South America. In Honduras or Venezuela, it’s all about Miami. Victor will easily command a minimum of $125k.
Dylan has the most options. Much of his massage money could be under the table and if they are found liable in the civil suit, Dylan is the only one who will skate by. He can pursue any of his career paths to date. The massage business, in South Beach alone, will generate another $175k. That is the actual income of Massage Therapist in SoBe. Tourists, especially the models in South Beach, love to have massages. Real ones. No happy endings.
The trouple show well. They are verbal, allegedly, depending on who you talk with, they are handsome, although from what I can see, many of you have eliminated Joe from the competition. He still shows well in a suit. That is all you need on an interview. And, they have clearly proven, they know how to tell a story, so their employment interviews will go swimmingly.
None of them have to get over the criminal backgroundcheck issue, as the matter will be discussed up front. No hurdles there. Prospective employers may be impressed that they came clean up front and could become more loyal to them. I’ve seen it before. Everyone likes a real sad story where there are burdens and the party involved takes responsibility.
Basically, which is kind of funny, if you think about it- the boys will present themselves to prospective employers as victims, especially when they spin the story about how they were unfairly pursued by the authorities as a scapegoat or for being ‘gay bashed by the government. And, Leibowitz’ ultimate decision sets them free. They got off. Obviously, they were innocent. A prospective employer will not know, Leibovitz expressed doubt about their innocence. The record will show, “acquittal.”
As for adding new hires to the workplace, there will be no disruption. Since the national media has not been covering this story, and no one in Miami, over 1000 miles from Washington DC, knows about Robert Wone or the case. An employer does not have to worry about how this will play out in the office. They are off the hook, like innocent.
Collectively they can all earn well. If the house in Miami has no mortgage, they are even better off. Since they purchased a home there, they have already bought into the Southern Florida, so there is no hardship acclimating. They want to be there. Again, no hurdles. It’s not like trying to get used to living in North Dakota, when you want to be in Washington, DC.
If you have a minimum pot of $595,000 per annum, it’s a start. So, for those of you who believe their futures are over, rethink it.
Miami is a hot spot for Gay folks and quite urban. These may be harsh realities to some. My only fear is that the posting will empower them at a time they feel their options are limited.”
Thanks to Rich. We’ll ask him later if he’s looking for resumes. He tells us he’s not. 🙂