From FB–the Law on Jurors. Can they lie?

Everyone’s see the Juror form.  It asks prospective jurors if they have been accused or convicted of a crime or involved in litigation.

What about the juror that lies?  Can a criminal serve on a jury?  A lying criminal?

Here is the law to use on lying jurors:

” Fraud upon the court” has been defined by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to “embrace that species of fraud which does, or attempts to, defile the court itself, or is a fraud perpetrated by officers of the court so that the judicial machinery can not perform in the usual manner its impartial task of adjudging cases that are presented for adjudication.” Kenner v. C.I.R., 387 F.3d 689 (1968); 7 Moore’s Federal Practice, 2d ed., p. 512, ¶ 60.23. The 7th Circuit further stated “a decision produced by fraud upon the court is not in essence a decision at all, and never becomes final.” “Fraud upon the court” makes void the orders and judgments of that court. It is also clear and well-settled Illinois law that any attempt to commit “fraud upon the court” vitiates the entire proceeding. The People of the State of Illinois v. Fred E. Sterling, 357 Ill. 354; 192 N.E. 229 (1934) (“The maxim that fraud vitiates every transaction into which it enters applies to judgments as well as to contracts and other transactions.”); Allen F. Moore v. Stanley F. Sievers, 336 Ill. 316; 168 N.E. 259 (1929) (“The maxim that fraud vitiates every transaction into which it enters …”); In re Village of Willowbrook, 37 Ill.App.2d 393 (1962) (“It is axiomatic that fraud vitiates everything.”); Dunham v. Dunham, 57 Ill.App. 475 (1894), affirmed 162 Ill. 589 (1896); Skelly Oil Co. v. Universal Oil Products Co., 338 Ill.App. 79, 86 N.E.2d 875, 883-4 (1949); Thomas Stasel v. The American Home Security Corporation, 362 Ill. 350; 199 N.E. 798 (1935). Hence, any juror who lied on their jury form committed Fraud on the Court.

In People v. Martin, 587 N.E.2d 1228, 225 Ill.App.3d 339, 167 Ill.Dec. 613 (Ill. App. 1 Dist., 1992) the Court ruled that litigants have the right to a fair and impartial jury and to have honest jurors serve on the jury.  Certain jurors in that case stated on their juror form that they had not been accused, convicted or involved in litigation when in fact they had been arrested and/or convicted.  The court found that jurors who lied on juror forms lacked the necessary truthfulness and veracity to serve on a jury and therefore could not have been beneficial to justice in the Appellant’s case.  Id. at 1232 quoting People v. Franklin (1990), 135 Ill.2d 78, 142 Ill.Dec. 152, 552 N.E.2d 743):   “a venireperson’s lack of veracity in no way promotes the administration of justice and cannot be deemed beneficial to the accused’s or the State’s case in chief.” Franklin, 135 Ill.2d at 95, 142 Ill.Dec. at 160, 552 N.E.2d at 751.C.

What about prospective jurors that make derogatory statements during jury selection?

In the case of Maddox v. Smith One of the prospective jurors made numerous statements during the jury selection regarding his beliefs that plaintiffs should not be allowed to sue insurance companies or insured defendants.  Plaintiff asserted these derogatory comments intentionally tainted the remainder of the jurors. Maddox v. Smith (1966), 67 Ill.App.2d 374, 214 N.E.2d 5, stands for the principle that a mistrial should be granted if a prospective juror expresses derogatory remarks about persons seeking recovery from insured defendants. In Maddox, a prospective juror had, in a prior case, delivered a diatribe lasting several minutes regarding plaintiffs who filed suits against insured defendants. One or more of the jurors in the prior case also served on the jury in the Maddox case, and Maddox’s counsel claimed that, had he known this, he would have called for a mistrial. The Maddox court acknowledged that a mistrial was warranted in the prior case.

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