Monday, February 19, 2007

Mo. kidnap case challenges young lawyers

Mo. kidnap case challenges young lawyers: "The two young lawyers who have taken on the defense of alleged child abductor Michael Devlin are eager but they‘re being seen as underdogs in a costly and complex case.

'If you had said ‘do I know these guys?‘ I‘d have said ‘I have no clue,‘' said Chet Pleban, who‘s practiced criminal law in St. Louis for 33 years.

Corlija and Kielty are undeterred.

Devlin is the 41-year-old pizzeria manager charged with kidnapping 11-year-old Shawn Hornbeck in 2002 and 13-year-old Ben Ownby Jan. 8, both from rural areas of eastern Missouri. Both boys were found in Devlin‘s apartment in the St. Louis suburb of Kirkwood Jan. 12.

'The evidence is going to be overwhelming,' said Arthur Margulis, a criminal lawyer here for 35 years. 'This is not a whodunit. ... The odds of achieving a satisfactory result are very remote.'"

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