NEW YORK – Martha Stewart's (search) former broker asked an appeals court Wednesday to overturn his conviction because he was wrongly forced to stand trial alongside his celebrity client in a high-profile case about a suspicious trade.
Lawyers for Peter Bacanovic (search), in papers filed with the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals, said their client did not receive a fair trial because he was subjected to prejudicial evidence used against Stewart. They argued that the trial judge erred in refusing to allow Bacanovic to be tried separately.
"Time and time again, evidence admissible only against Stewart but toxic to Bacanovic was put before the jury and improperly usee sentenced to five months in prison.
Bacanovic remains free on bond pending appeal. However Stewart, in an effort to lift the cloud depressing shares of her Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. (MSO) began serving her sentence in Alderson, W. V., on October 8.
Stewart's lawyers were expected to file her appeal papers later on Wednesday night.