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PROSECUTOR’S UNPAID BAR DUES LEAVES DEFENSE AN OPENING The only convicted criminal tried by a Santa Clara County prosecutor while he was ineligible to practice law is urging a judge to dismiss the charges against him. In September, Deputy DA Steven Moore persuaded a jury to find Dale Anderson guilty of lewd conduct with a 14- or 15-year-old. Moore, however, had been suspended by the State Bar for a three-month period last year for failing to pay his bar membership dues � a fact that didn’t come to the attention of officials at the DA’s office until January. Now Anderson’s appellate attorney, J. Courtney Shevelson, has petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus, arguing Moore violated state law and Anderson’s right to due process. At the very least, Shevelson argued in the writ filed Tuesday, Anderson deserves a new trial. “[Moore's] participation in the trial constituted a gross impropriety that casts doubt on the integrity of the criminal justice system and will result in diminished public faith and confidence in the system’s fairness if unredressed,” wrote Shevelson, a lawyer in Carmel. Anderson has not yet served his six-month jail sentence. He was initially scheduled to begin his sentence on July 13, but on Monday, his trial attorney, San Jose lawyer Steven Clark, requested that date be postponed by 30 to 40 days, pending the outcome of the habeas petition. Citing the state’s Business and Professions Code in the writ, Shevelson wrote that every appearance Moore made before the court in Anderson’s case amounted to unlawful, “possibly felonious” conduct, as well as contempt of court. “I don’t think that California has seen a case like this,” Shevelson said in a phone interview Friday. Neither Moore nor the DA’s office returned messages left Friday.

Millie Lapidario

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