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Former Martinsburg lawyer sentenced for criminal contempt

August 04, 2008

WHEELING, W.Va. - A former Martinsburg, W.Va., attorney was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court to four months in federal prison.

Heidi J. Silver Myers was sentenced to four months in prison followed by four months home detention with electronic monitoring at her expense, U.S. Attorney Sharon L. Potter announced in a news release.

Myers, 30, was convicted on one charge of criminal contempt after a two-day bench trial in May 2007.

Judge Frederick P. Stamp Jr. also sentenced Myers to three years supervised release following her sentence and a fine of $2,000.

According to court documents, on Dec. 5, 2006, Myers disobeyed a lawful subpoena issued by a federal grand jury by failing to appear and produce requested documents and items.

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Stamp found that the contempt constituted a felony conviction and analogized her actions to obstruction of justice. Myers' license to practice law in West Virginia was annulled earlier this year.

Attorneys for Myers said in a pretrial hearing they advised their client not to appear before the grand jury without them being present and that they were unable to appear before the grand jury as scheduled.

Myers is free on bond and will self-report Sept. 4 to a designated federal institution, according to the news release.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Thomas O. Mucklow and Paul T. Camilletti.

The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service and Commission on Special Investigations.

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