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Pellicano Trial: LAPD Employment Scheme

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Right now, we're busy listening to a parade of former colleagues of Mr. Arneson's who are testifying to what a.) what a good officer he was and b.) how helpful he was and c.) how they all made lots of arrests together. The idea is to show that Mr. Pellicano wasn't just paying Mr. Arneson to do illegal runs, but that the former detective was also supplying Mr. Arneson with useful law enforcement information.

Given the testimony so far, that seems to be a distinct possibility--since based on the testimony, it appears that Mr. Pellicano did seem to have connections to many of the people that former Sgt. Arneson ended up arresting. On the other hand, it's doubtful if the jury is getting any of that because the testimony has been so dry. One defendant is actually sleeping and several others are busy checking out their nails or surreptitiously trying to do something else that's clearly more interesting than listening to the witnesses. Even Mr. Lally, who's handling many of this morning's objections for the government, had to be prompted by Mr. Saunders to object on a few occasions. (Nothing like an elbow to the side to make a guy scream out an objection.)

But even with the testimony of various LAPD officers testifying about Mr. Arneson's competence on the job, it's hard to believe that the jury is going to forget the beating his credibility took during Mr. Saunders' lengthy and very brutal cross-examination. (Even the judge had to look away at one point because it was just too painful to watch.) But, it can't hurt the defense to have the jury know that Mr. Arneson had some friends in the police department and that he was well respected by the detectives and other officers that worked under him. The problem is that if Mr. Pellicano was indeed a source for Mr. Arneson (along with being his employer), the former Sgt. kept his connection to Mr. Pellicano completely to himself. Unfortunately, as Mr. Saunders pointed out on cross-examination, none of these other officers knew about Mr. Pellicano being a source for Mr. Arneson. So, that means that the only one who's testified to Mr. Pellicano being a source for Mr. Arneson was Mr. Arneson--which doesn't really help him very much.

Read all the coverage from inside the Pellicano courtroom