Law Professor’s Book Looks at Martha Stewart’s Legal Woes

KNOXVILLE — In recent years, numerous white-collar crimes have made headlines, but perhaps none has had the celebrity appeal of Martha Stewart’s stock-selling scandal.

Joan Heminway
Joan Heminway
In “Martha Stewart’s Legal Troubles,” University of Tennessee law professor Joan Heminway has compiled essays by various legal scholars looking at the historical facts and making analytical observations concerning the legal claims brought against Stewart concerning the selling of her ImClone Systems Inc. shares. The book was published in December 2006 by Carolina Academic Press.

“Martha Stewart herself is interesting,” Heminway said. “She was being investigated for insider trading, which is an area I write about, think a lot about and teach in class. The more I dug at the facts, the more interesting it became to me.”

The book is divided into three major sections. It starts with issues related to the actual December 2001 crime and pretrial, then moves to the trial itself and ends with post-trial matters like the prosecution of Larry Stewart, the key government witness accused of perjury.

Each chapter concludes with three or more questions — which allows the book to be used as a teaching tool by law and business school professors.

Footnotes are printed at the end of each chapter, so the casual reader doesn’t become bogged down with hefty academic citations.

Heminway never had the chance to speak with Stewart or her lawyers. She speculates that Stewart was wisely advised not to talk to the public about her cases, and also thinks Stewart would like to put the past behind her.

Heminway said she wrote the book as a secondary text for teaching so law students could have access to scholarly materials relating to real-world instances of white-collar crime involving her key teaching areas of securities regulation and corporate law.

“She was prosecuted, not for insider trading, but for obstruction of justice, false statements made to public officials and securities fraud. The securities fraud part of the case is also a rather novel charge in an area that I teach. I started to see the Stewart stock sale as a case study of things I taught in class.”

Heminway has been recognized with several awards including the University Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence in 2006, the College of Law’s Marilyn V. Yarbrough Faculty Award for Writing Excellence in 2005, and the College of Law’s Harold C. Warner Outstanding Teacher Award in 2004.

In addition to teaching at UT, Heminway has been a visiting professor at Boston College Law School and Vanderbilt Law School.

Before teaching, Heminway worked for almost 15 years at the Boston office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, a multi-national, full-service law firm. There, she specialized in corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions and public and private securities offerings.

Contacts:
Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034, amy.blakely@tennessee.edu
Joan Heminway, (865) 974-3813, heminway@libra.law.utk.edu