JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A federal judge has appointed attorney John P. Leombruno as co-counsel for suspended Jacksonville City Council member Katrina Brown to help her fight federal charges of fraud and conspiracy.
Brown's current attorney, Richard Landes, asked for additional help, after he replaced her first court-appointed attorney who withdrew from the case after working on it for nearly seven months. Landes was appointed because Brown could not afford to hire her own attorney.
Brown's previous court-appointed attorney was allowed to withdraw from the case due to "irreconcilable differences."
Tuesday, United States magistrate judge James Klindt held a hearing on the request from Brown and Landes, hearing from them during a closed court session that lasted for nearly 40 minutes. At the end of the hearing, Klindt announced a second attorney would join the case, and the specific attorney would be named later.
After the hearing, the councilwoman told News4Jax she was pleased with the judge's decision. In the motion, Landes called the case large and complex, pointing to a 58 page indictment and more than 31,000 pages of documents and contracts.
"I think I am excited about the face that the judge was fair," Brown told News4Jax. "I hope to get due process."
Katrina Brown is due back in court on Thursday along with Reggie Brown, another suspended member of City Council who is charged in the case, which stems from a loan to Katrina Brown's family's barbecue sauce business.