By Sharon L. McCarthy
Every criminal defense attorney lives for the opportunity to try a major case. Trials give us the opportunity to step out of our day-to-day lives of client meetings, desk-work and phone calls and jump into the theater of the courtroom. After all, there’s nothing like holding captive an entire courtroom as we deliver a jury address or cross-examine a government witness. Of course, trying a case is exhausting, both physically and mentally, and, particularly in the white collar context, requires a tremendous amount of preparation both before and during trial, often at the expense of other pending matters and one’s personal life. Representing a client who, in most cases, faces jail time if convicted, also takes an emotional toll on the trial lawyer, who must stand next to the client in those tense moments when the jury’s verdict is announced, count by painful count. Yet if offered the opportunity to try a case, particularly one touted by the government as the largest tax fraud in history, most of us won’t hesitate to accept.