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Joan Orie Melvin appeal cites alleged bias of trial judge

Written by The Associated Press | Dec 10, 2013 1:12 PM
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(Pittsburgh) -- Former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin contends the trial judge was biased against her when she was convicted of campaign corruption earlier this year.   

Melvin's attorneys make that claim in a 101-page brief supporting her Superior Court appeal seeking to overturn her appeal and conviction. 

She was convicted of using her former Superior Court staff to run her campaigns for the Supreme Court in 2003, when she lost, and again in 2009 when she won a seat on the state's highest court

Melvin claims Allegheny County Judge Lester Nauhaus made comments that ``regularly and repeatedly communicated'' he believed the charges against Melvin, and didn't believe the defense she presented.  

The district attorney's office has yet to respond to the filing, and a spokesman for the office is declining comment on it.  

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