Scalded

A long-time aide. A few thousand dollars' worth of dubious insurance receipts. A cauldron of allegations. U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey has been . . . scalded

Susanna Timor is scheduled to stand trial on February 5 in Miami. Kendall Coffey is scheduled to testify in her defense. Since her indictment and suspension from the U.S. Attorney's Office, Timor has found work as a paralegal at a Miami law firm. She has put her Miami Beach house on the market to help pay her attorneys' fees and plans to move in with her mother, reports a friend, Alden Burlington, the wife of Robert Burlington and a lawyer who has volunteered to help prepare Timor's defense.

Timor is also getting financial assistance from elsewhere: After her arrest, an e-mail circulated throughout the U.S. Attorney's Office inviting employees to contribute to a Susanna Timor Defense Fund. The source of the e-mail is unclear. Robert Burlington says he and his wife are handling a defense fund, too. He says he sent letters to about 40 people, a list compiled by Timor herself, and has raised about $3000. None of the money, as far as he can remember, came from an employee of the U.S. Attorney's Office. Burlington says another Timor friend has launched yet another defense fund.

Polk Assistant State Attorney Cass Castillo says that if Timor is convicted on any or all of the charges, he will recommend to the judge that she serve a sentence of up to one year in a county jail.

Originally Timor's case was assigned to Circuit Court Judge Alex Ferrer. But the defense asked that Ferrer recuse himself because he was once an investigator for the Miami office of the state Division of Insurance Fraud and was also the judge who signed Timor's arrest warrant. The case has been reassigned to Judge Alan Gold.

Gold was a partner at Greenberg Traurig when Coffey and Burlington worked there. But despite this relationship between the judge and the defendant's extremely influential witness, prosecutors seem confident that blind justice will prevail; they haven't asked for Gold's recusal.

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