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Top 5: ‘This is just a difficult time for Mr. Needleman’

The guilty plea of a prominent Baltimore criminal defense attorney was the most-read law story of the week. A lawsuit filed by the ACLU against Baltimore City police, a power outage in city circuit court and the start of the Court of Appeals' new term round out the Top 5. 1. Needleman pleads guilty to tax evasion, resigns from bar - by Andy Marso After pleading guilty to tax evasion and structuring bank deposits to hide income, Stanley Needleman could face between 30 and 46 months of prison time under the deal he made with prosecutors. He also agreed to forfeit $1.15 million in cash that federal agents found in two basement safes when they raided his Pikesville home on April 14. But he said what was really weighing on him was that after 40 years of practice, he was no longer a lawyer. 2. Power outage closes part of Baltimore City Circuit Court - by Andy Marso The top four floors of the six-story Courthouse East in Baltimore closed Monday due to electrical problems, grinding to a halt most legal proceedings in one of the two Baltimore City Circuit Court buildings. Judge W. Michel Pierson said elevators were out of service throughout the Baltimore City Circuit Court building and everything above the second floor has only limited lighting.

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