Federal prosecutors on Thursday asked a federal appeals court to overturn last month's decision to grant a new trial to Charles H. Keating Jr., the former head of Lincoln Savings who was convicted on charges of looting the Irvine-based thrift and swindling investors.
"We think the decision is not only at odds with Supreme Court rulings and rulings in other circuits, but creates an unworkable rule of law," said Miriam A. Krinsky, chief of criminal appeals at the U.S. attorney's office in Los Angeles.
In a 3-0 decision in June, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said federal jurors improperly learned of and discussed Keating's earlier state court conviction on similar charges. The federal jury convicted Keating in January 1993 of racketeering, conspiracy and fraud.
His state securities fraud conviction was tossed out in April 1996 by a federal judge who cited flawed legal theories and jury instructions. State prosecutors are appealing that ruling.
Keating has been free since October 1996, except for five days spent in jail this year after a federal judge ruled he had violated his release terms by applying for a passport.
Former Fluor President, Vice Chairman Dies
Buck Mickel, the former vice chairman and president of Irvine engineering powerhouse Fluor Corp., died Thursday at his home in Greenville, S.C. He was 72.
Mickel was appointed vice chairman and president of Fluor in 1984. He retired from those positions as part of a 1987 restructuring, but he continued to served on Fluor's board of directors until January.
"The loss of Buck Mickel is a tragic one for all of us," said Philip J. Carroll, the company's current chief executive and chairman. "He provided 50 years of exceptional service to our company, successfully expanding it globally and bringing an informed business perspective to its operations,"
Mickel broke into construction in 1948 with Daniel Construction Co., where he eventually became president and general manager. In 1974, he was elected chairman of the board. He later helped oversee Fluor's buyout of Daniel International Corp. in 1977.
Mickel is survived by his wife of 52 years, Minor; a daughter, Minor Mickel Shaw; two sons, Buck Alston Mickel and Charles Clark Mickel; and five grandchildren.