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Thu Oct 31, 2019, 10:48 AM

Austin lawyer known as 'DWI Dude' convicted by North Texas jury of scamming Colombian narcos

Source: Dallas Morning News

Austin lawyer known as ‘DWI Dude’ convicted by North Texas jury of scamming Colombian narcos

Jamie Balagia was found guilty of wire fraud, obstruction and other charges after a two-week trial in connection with his representation of Colombian drug traffickers

By Kevin Krause
2:49 PM on Oct 29, 2019

Jamie Balagia, a veteran Austin lawyer who made a name for himself defending people charged with drunken driving, was convicted Tuesday of federal corruption charges in connection with his scheme to shake down international drug traffickers.

Balagia, 62, was found guilty of conspiracy to commit money laundering, obstruction of justice, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and attempting to violate the Kingpin Act for accepting money from men whom the feds designated as significant drug traffickers without official government permission.

The jury deliberated for about a day and a half following the two-week trial in the Eastern District of Texas in Sherman before U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant. Jurors agreed with prosecutors that Balagia and his cohorts scammed Colombian drug traffickers out of about $1.5 million by claiming to use their connections to pay off U.S. officials to get their cases dropped.

Balagia faces up to 30 years in prison. He was taken into custody after the verdict was read. A sentencing date was not immediately available.

Balagia ran in 2014 for Texas attorney general on a Libertarian platform of legalizing marijuana. He called himself the “DWI Dude” for his expertise and once arrived for a hearing in Plano with a Winnebago decorated with his image and the advertising slogan, “Busted? Call the Dude!”


Read more: https://www.dallasnews.com/news/crime/2019/10/29/austin-lawyer-known-as-dwi-dude-convicted-by-north-texas-jury-of-scamming-colombian-narcos/


Source: Washington Post

Texas lawyer ‘DWI Dude’ scammed Colombian drug lords out of more than $1 million. One ratted him out to the feds.

By Meagan Flynn
Oct. 31, 2019 at 7:18 a.m. EDT

From a cramped prison cell in Bogota, Colombia, the American attorney and his private investigator went over the shadowy deal with their client once more.

They didn’t speak any Spanish, at least not well enough to communicate with the accused Colombian drug lord sitting on his prison cot, and so the investigator, Chuck Morgan, brought his wife to help translate at the December 2015 meeting. The prisoner, Segundo Villota Segura, was fighting extradition to the United States. He considered by U.S. authorities to be part of one of the most formidable cocaine-running enterprises in the world, with connections to the Sinaloa cartel and violent Mexican gangs.

His attorney was Jamie Balagia, better known in Texas as the “DWI Dude.”

As his nickname suggested, Balagia normally represented people popped with DWI or marijuana possession charges. International drug trafficking conspiracy was new.

The details of the transaction were simple, Balagia and Morgan explained: Segura would pay them a couple million, and in exchange, they would use the money to bribe influential U.S. officials to make Segura’s drug case disappear. Segura had already paid a significant portion, according to court filings, and now he wanted to know where the money had gone.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/10/31/texas-dwi-dude-scammed-colombians-turned-into-feds/

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Reply Austin lawyer known as 'DWI Dude' convicted by North Texas jury of scamming Colombian narcos (Original post)
Eugene Oct 31 OP
lapfog_1 Oct 31 #1

Response to Eugene (Original post)

Thu Oct 31, 2019, 10:52 AM

1. suicide?

lets scam some drug lords, get caught for money laundering... and go to prison...

I wouldn't give him high odds for surviving very long.

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