Paying for experience

United States v. Wiechmann, __ M.J. ___, No. 09-0082/MC (C.A.A.F. July 6, 2009) has been decided.  There was error, but found to be constitutionally harmless.

After a captain with very little defense experience was detailed to represent a retirement-eligible lieutenant colonel, the Chief Defense Counsel of the Marine Corps detailed a highly respected Marine Reservist LtCol as a defense counsel in the case.  From this point on the convening authority and the first military judge on the case refused to recognize or deal with LtCol Shelburne as a detailed counsel.  A second judge did accept the detailing.  The issue was money, who pays for the LtCol.

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