How Appealing Extra

How Appealing Extra

Monday, June 23, 2008

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June 23, 2008

Defense Lawyer Mark Holscher Will Represent Judge

By John Roemer
Daily Journal Staff Writer

SAN FRANCISCO - Chief Judge Alex Kozinski has hired prominent criminal defense lawyer Mark C. Holscher, the Daily Journal has learned.

The development Friday came as the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals' chief was in hot water for keeping sexually explicit photos on a Web site,, that he said was intended to be private.

Kozinski did not follow his customary practice of returning a reporter's e-mail query. Instead, Holscher phoned but declined to discuss his work for the judge.

Disclosure of the photos forced Kozinski on June 13 to recuse himself from an obscenity trial he was overseeing in Los Angeles federal court.

That situation led Kozinski to call for a judicial misconduct investigation of himself.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts last week transferred the matter to the 3rd Circuit, based in Philadelphia, where a five-judge panel was convened to evaluate Kozinski's behavior.

Holscher, a partner at Kirkland & Ellis' San Francisco and Los Angeles offices, flew to Los Angeles Friday. Kozinski keeps chambers at the circuit's Pasadena courthouse.

Former Federal Prosecutor
The lawyer is a member of the firm's commercial litigation and white-collar criminal defense groups, according to the Kirkland & Ellis Web site. In an earlier position at O'Melveny & Myers, in Los Angeles, Holscher represented former Rep. Randall "Duke" Cunningham, R-Calif., who is currently serving an eight-year prison sentence for bribery, mail fraud and tax evasion. Holscher is a former assistant U.S. attorney in Los Angeles.

As a federal prosecutor, Holscher appeared in 1995 before a 9th Circuit three-judge appellate panel led by Kozinski to defend the conviction of a defendant in a complex loan fraud scheme. Kozinski and the other panelists affirmed the conviction. U.S. v. Turman, 122 F.3d 1167.

Holscher was on a short list to be U.S. attorney for California's Central District in 2002.