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A veteran Broward County, Fla., Circuit judge has called the legal bills in the capital murder case against a former federal informant one of the “worst” examples of “overpayment” of legal fees and costs that she’s ever seen.

The case of Luis Martinez, who has been jailed since his arrest in November 2003, is now on its fourth set of publicly paid defense attorneys and has run up legal bills of $46,000 so far. With a trial date nowhere in sight, Judge Ana Gardiner slashed the fees requested by Fort Lauderdale, Fla., defense lawyer Barry Butin in half — to $10,600 — when Butin recently withdrew from the case after 14 months.

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