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Former defense attorney indicted

February 19, 2009

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- A former Martinsburg criminal defense attorney whose license to practice law has been annulled was indicted on 11 counts of practicing law without a license by a grand jury seated this week for the February term of circuit court in Berkeley County.

Steven M. Askin of 412 S. Raleigh St., Apt. 2B, could not be reached for comment about the presentation of state's evidence the jury heard from West Virginia State Police Sgt. D.E. Boober.

Askin's license to practice law in West Virginia was annulled more than 10 years ago, according to court records

Askin was released from federal prison in 1996 after serving a six-month, 20-day sentence in Cumberland, Md. He reported there in April 1996 after pleading guilty to criminal contempt for refusing to testify before a federal judge in a May 1994 drug trial for four defendants, including one of his own clients. All four were convicted.

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The 11-count indictment alleges nine people were counseled by Askin within one year of the grand jury's findings.

Among others indicted this week was former Martinsburg City Councilman Glenville K. Twigg on counts of assault and battery in April 2008.

Police have alleged Twigg struck a woman in the head with a wooden club at what was his business at 110 Centre St.

Askin and Twigg were two of 56 people who were indicted this week before proceedings ended Thursday afternoon.

-- Matthew Umstead

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