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Still no verdict in Espada trial

May 11, 2012 7:00:29 PM PDT
The roller-coaster jury deliberations at the trial of a former New York state senator accused of embezzlement will enter a third week.

Brooklyn jurors went home without reaching a verdict Friday in the case of Pedro Espada Jr.

A judge told them to come back Monday to resume deliberations that began two weeks ago.

The deliberations have been colored by conflicting notes from the jurors. One complained that a holdout juror wasn't deliberating. Another said the jury was deadlocked. Yet another on Thursday said it was close to a partial verdict.

The 58-year-old Espada and his son are accused of looting a half million dollars from a health care network in Bronx that was operated with state grants. Their lawyers insist they did nothing wrong, and that they were entitled to draw a salary from a company they founded.

After jurors sent the judge in a note Thursday indicating they had reached a verdict on at least one of eight counts but were divided on others, Espada emerged from the courthouse and declared that the note showed the government had failed to make its case.

On Friday, Espada and his lawyers told reporters they want the judge to let the jury know it can end the trial by returning a partial verdict.

"We have a request for clarity," Espada said.

The Espadas face nearly 10 years in prison if convicted.

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