The HP Saga: Focus on Ann Baskins

7 Oct ’06

The WSJ Law Blog asks the question I asked in my last post on HP: Bill Lockyer has indicted Patricia Dunn and Kevin Hunsaker – why not Ann Baskins?:

We posed the why-not-Baskins question to three law professors, who offered their opinions with the obvious caveat that they do not know all the facts that Lockyer relied upon in deciding who to charge:

    Robert Weisberg, Criminal Law Professor, Stanford University: He says Lockyer might have excused Baskins, because he believes she might be a “source of evidence against others. That would not be the first time that someone who looked as guilty as others got off because they are the most useful as cooperators.” Weisberg believes Baskins will not be charged at a later date. “From the flavor of Lockyer’s statements, it didn’t sound like this is the start. It looked like he had put together a package and [Baskins] wasn’t in the package.”

    Deborah DeMott, Corporate Law professor, Duke University School of Law: “It seems puzzling to me. It seems more likely to me that whatever culpable state of mind the statutes require was more likely to be present for [Baskins] than for [Dunn.]”

    Evan Lee, Criminal Law professor, Hastings College of Law: Lee says Lockyer’s charging decisions may have turned not only on mental states but the depth of the suspects’ involvement in the investigation. He says Lockyer may know details that might exculpate Baskins. If a corporate board is involved in “cloak and dagger stuff,” he says, it’s possible that it would hide details from a general counsel.

It has been reported that Baskins is co-operating with authorities. Is this now a case of Baskins v. Dunn?

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