These summaries were prepared by McGuireWoods LLP lawyer Thomas E. Spahn. They are based on the letter opinions issued by the Virginia State Bar. Any editorial comments reflect Mr. Spahn's current personal views, and not the opinions of the Virginia State Bar, McGuireWoods or its clients. 
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9-Government Lawyer Conflicts

48-Criminal Defense Lawyers

51-Government Attorneys

A Commonwealth's Attorney may not defend criminal cases in any court in which the Commonwealth Attorney prosecutes, but may do so in other courts depending on the proximity to courts in which the Commonwealth Attorney practices, the nature of the crime, the identity of the defendants and witnesses. A county, city or town attorney may not defend criminal cases involving ordinances from that jurisdiction, even if the lawyer has no responsibility for prosecuting violations of the ordinances. Such a lawyer may defend criminal cases in the jurisdiction's courts as long as: (1) the jurisdiction's ordinances are not involved and; the lawyer does not appear before the same jury panel in which the lawyer has prosecuted a matter.

Copyright 2000, Thomas E. Spahn