Only a few days after pleading "not guilty" to conspiracy charges, Tony "T" Taylor changed his mind and his plea. Taylor is accused of being a partner with Michael Vick in the Bad Newz Kennels operation for large scale dog-fighting and gambling.
In his plea agreement, Taylor alleges "Michael Vick supplied most of the money to run and bet on dog fights at a Virginia property he owned."
What's ominous is that Taylor isn't "copping a plea" in return for a promise of a light sentence. According top the news report, the Feds did not offer a deal. Taylor is falling on the mercy of the court in return for his testimony against the other defendants.
Without knowing anything about Taylor, I'm going to guess that he has credibility issues -- just because I think dog fighters have "credibility issues." Had he pled out to get a lighter sentence, a sharp attorney like Billy Martin could savage him for self-serving interests. Now, Taylor has no incentive for hiding the truth, and a good deal of incentive to avoid perjury. If the judge senses "T" is untruthful, the sentence will be harsher.
Vick assembled a superlative legal team to represent him. That indicates he intends to fight the charges, which is entirely within his rights. At the moment, he is innocent. The evidence and testimony has yet to be challenged. But, the longer this goes on, the more comes out, and the more Ookie twists in the wind.
When the case was led by Surry County, Vick had little to worry about, since he had more financial resources (I suspect) than a backwater county. Once the feds took the lead, starting with their search of the property on Moonlight Road, things rapidly spun out of control for Vick. The best course of action for Vick would have been to cop a plea for lesser charges with the County, and suppress a lot the evidence before the feds turned up. Too late for that now.
But, what do I know? I'm no lawyer. I just watch them on TV.
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