Stanford trial: One more day for jury selection

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

Reports say R. Allen Stanford’s jury selection may take one more day.

Further, private conversations are needed with potential jurors, reporters tweeted, about biases they said they had Monday as the fallen financier’s trial got under way in Houston, Texas.

Formerly beknighted Stanford questioned his attorney at midday about whether he’d be having another peanut-butter sandwich for lunch.

Apparently, tweeted Houston Chronicle reporter Terry Langston, the one he’d had last week during a pre-trial hearing was on stale bread.

Nearly 2 1/2 years after his arrest, 61-year-old Stanford went on trial in Houston, Texas, where he headquartered his financial empire before it came crashing down in 2009.

U.S. District Judge David Hittner told potential jurors he expects the trial to last six weeks and and he took charge first-hand to select the 14 people who’ll sit as jurors, including two alternates.

Reports last week stated that 80 people were called as potential jurors. Among them were accountancy and financial skills backgrounds.

Chronicle reporter Mike Tolson said Hittner showed them a chess timer he will use to keep track of the time used by lawyers for Stanford and the government.

Stanford, attired in a gray suit and tie-less blue shirt, will hear the government’s case and witnesses with their versions of a story, which claims Stanford operated a scheme that cost investors $7.2 billion.

James M. Davis, who built a four-story mansion west of Baldwyn in Union County, is expected to testify for the government. Exactly when he’ll take the stand isn’t clear, but it could be soon.

• For more, read Tuesday’s Daily Journal.