Judge continues Lakin hearing until Sept. 10

Ann Knef Sep. 4, 2008, 3:31am

Lakin (left) and Rosenblum

U.S. District Judge J. Phil Gilbert has continued a plea hearing in Tom Lakin's criminal case until 10 a.m. on Sept. 10 in East St. Louis.

Lakin's attorney Scott Rosenblum last week asked to continue the hearing that had been scheduled for Sept. 3 in Benton.

A binding plea agreement entered Aug. 18 calls for Lakin, who was indicted in April 2007 for cocaine possession and transporting a minor across state lines for sexual purposes, to serve a six year sentence for possession with the intent to deliver cocaine, distributing cocaine to a person under 21 and maintaining a drug-involved premises.

Under the deal proposed, prosecutors would drop sex charges that could carry a life sentence.

Since the newest plea agreement was entered Aug. 18 there have been two documents filed under seal in the case.

On Aug. 19, Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Clark filed a sealed document. On Aug. 29, Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Burke filed a sealed motion, which is the last entry on the case docket.

In his motion for continuance, Rosenblum explained that he's scheduled for another trial in Miller County, Mo., in a case in which plea negotiations had recently collapsed, "thus forcing a trial on this matter for September 2-4."

Rosenblum also informed the court, "for the sake of scheduling efficiency," that he would be involved in trial in another matter scheduled to begin Sept. 22 in federal court in the Eastern District of Missouri.

"The aforementioned case is expected to go to trial and last a week and a half," he wrote.

The latest plea agreement signed by Lakin would require him to pay $180,000 in restitution to an Illinois advocacy group, rather than a Missouri entity, which had been proposed in an earlier deal.

He would also pay a $20,000 fine and forfeit $325,000.

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