The Fall of the House of Zeus: The Rise and Ruin of America's Most Powerful Trial Lawyer

Curtis Wilkie, Harmony, $25.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-307-46070-7
Former Boston Globe reporter and Mississippian Wilkie charts the meteoric career of lawyer Richard "Dickie" Scruggs in this riveting if labyrinthine account that in Wilkie's telling, involves treachery, professional jealousy, and zealous prosecution. Known as the "King of Torts," Scruggs had made a fortune with class action lawsuits involving asbestos claims in Pascagoula, Miss., and then tobacco lawsuits in the mid-1990s. But with fame and fortune came enemies in the small Mississippi world of law and politics, and also contact with what Scruggs once dubbed "the dark side of the Force," people who carried out business best done behind the scenes. In 2007, while handling a Katrina victims' class action suit against insurers, Scruggs and his associates asked someone to approach a judge in a case filed against Scruggs by a disgruntled former colleague. The intermediary offered the judge money. Scruggs himself was eventually indicted on bribery charges and after a contentious federal investigation pleaded guilty; he's serving a five-year sentence. Wilkie (Dixie) carefully tracks the maneuverings of Scruggs and his associates and enemies in a remarkable illustration of how far the mighty can fall. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/09/2010
Release date: 10/01/2010
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 339 pages - 978-0-307-46072-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-4001-4995-7
Compact Disc - 978-1-4001-1995-0
MP3 CD - 978-1-4001-6995-5
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-61707-026-6
Paperback - 424 pages - 978-0-307-46071-4
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