Attorney Pierce O'Donnell indicted
Allegedly made $26,000 in illegal political contributionsA federal grand jury on Thursday indicted veteran Los Angeles attorney Pierce O'Donnell for allegedly violating federal campaign laws by making $26,000 in "conduit" campaign contributions through employees of his law firm and others.
The government claims O'Donnell asked employees of his law firm to make contributions to a 2004 candidate for president that he then turned around and reimbursed. O'Donnell is also accused of doing the same for a 2003 campaign and making false statements to the Federal Elections Commission.
O'Donnell could not be reached for comment on the charges. His lawyers have publicly stated they believe the charges are being waged against O'Donnell, a Democrat, because of his politics: O'Donnell currently represents Hurricane Katrina victims in a class-action case against the government and has been openly critical of many of George W. Bush's policies.
O'Donnell's practice has a wide span, ranging from class action to entertainment. In 1995, O'Donnell won a landmark case for MGM against Honda, which recognized federal copyright protection for the James Bond character. In 1998, he enjoined Sony Corp. from launching a competing Bond movie franchise.
He also won a $21.5 million trademark infringement settlement for his client, GoTo.com, against Disney.