U.S. News

Stanford Attorneys to Appeal Bail Decision

Attorneys for indicted banker Allen Stanford are not giving up on getting their client out of jail.

Allen Stanford

They've announced plans to appeal a December 23 ruling keeping Stanford behind bars without bail pending his trial in January, 2011.

Stanford, who once claimed a net worth of $2.2 billion, has been in custody non-stop since June, after U.S. District Judge David Hittner in Houston ruled he is a flight risk.

Defense attorneys Kent Schaffer and George McCall Secrest asked Hittner to reconsider the ruling last month, arguing that Stanford, 59, is in failing health and on the verge of a "complete nervous breakdown" following six months behind bars.

Within two days, Hittner denied the motion without explanation. Now, the attorneys have filed a notice that they plan to appeal the ruling to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

Last summer, that court upheld Hittner's bail decision, but Stanford's attorneys argue the situation has gotten so severe that their client cannot assist in his own defense.

Stanford faces 21 felony counts in an alleged $7 billion Ponzi scheme involving certificates of deposit issued by his offshore bank in Antigua.