Apr 092010
 April 9, 2010  Posted by  Court

Natasha Korecki reports:

There’s no question TV pitchman Kevin Trudeau urged his followers to deluge a federal judge with emails as the judge prepared to make a key decision in his case.

But appellate court judges this morning questioned whether U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman stepped out of bounds by ordering Trudeau to spend 30 days in jail for the shenanigans that shut down the judge’s Blackberry and clogged his email inbox.

Read more in the Chicago Sun-Times.

Color me a non-lawyer, but if 150 people feel strongly about a case and write to the judge hearing the case, are they in contempt of court? No, right? What if one person asks the 150 people to write? Is that person in contempt of court? And does it even matter whether he has a stake in the outcome of the case?

The judges seem to be focused on whether Trudeau’s actions occurred in court or out of court, but I don’t quite get how encouraging people to write to a judge is an act of contempt in any event. How is it contempt of court for people to write to judges to express their feelings about a case?

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