Williams drug-case jury may be deadlocked on 3 key counts

THE BALTIMORE EVENING SUN

A federal jury today entered its 12th day of deliberations in the drug case involving Linwood "Rudy" Williams and nine co-defendants, after reaching what may be a deadlock late Monday on three of the most serious charges in the case.

Senior Judge Frank A. Kaufman requested the continued deliberations late Monday after the panel sent word to him that, "It does not appear that the jury can come to a unanimous decision on counts 1, 14 and 18."

Count 1 charges Williams and all of his co-defendants with conspiracy. Count 14 charges Williams and his wife, Lisa Slater Williams, with money-laundering.

Count 18, a so-called "super-kingpin" count, charges Rudy Williams with acting as "principal administrator" of a continuing criminal enterprise. Should he be convicted of that, he would face a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without parole.

The jury said it had reached unanimous verdicts in all 15 other counts but has not yet been asked to return those verdicts.

Kaufman, who is conducting court in the Virgin Islands this week, has not yet given the jurors what is known as an "Allen charge," a last-ditch instruction that they are to try one more time to break any seemingly hopeless deadlocks.

The jury, which heard 54 days of evidence and arguments in the case, has been sequestered since March 6 and has deliberated all but one day since March 8.

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