Pedro Espada claims he can’t afford a lawyer
By Adam Wisnieski
Former state Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. was found guilty of stealing $448,000 from the Soundview Healthcare Network in May, but on Monday he told a judge that he’s too broke to pay for a lawyer to defend him in his next trial.
Mr. Espada is facing charges of tax evasion and submitting false statements to government agencies.
He parted ways with the defense attorney, Susan Necheles, who represented him during his last trial and Mr. Espada was ordered by Judge William Pauley to appear with new attorneys at a hearing on Monday.
Mr. Espada showed up with a public defender and requested that Judge Pauley allow the public defender to be his attorney, according to news reports.
Judge Pauley didn’t buy it.
He ordered Mr. Espada to prove he was too poor to afford an attorney to the Office of Pretrial Services, according to news reports.
“These things cost a great deal of money, that is known to all,” Mr. Espada told the New York Daily News outside the courtroom. “The fact is I’m unemployed.”