PORTLAND (AP) – A lawyer from York Beach has been acquitted in a criminal case for the second time this year.

After more than three hours of deliberation Wednesday, a Cumberland County Superior Court jury found Stephen Brett, 47, not guilty of theft.

The prosecution charged that Brett was double-dipping by demanding additional payments from a client in a court-appointed case in which legal expenses are paid by the state.

Brett said he accepted two $500 money orders from the client after she insisted on paying for her own defense.

In April, Brett was acquitted of violating a client’s bail conditions by allegedly arranging for a couple in a domestic violence case to be together. The conduct that led to the two criminal cases, along with other complaints, resulted in the suspension of Brett’s license to practice a year ago.

His lawyer, Jack Simmons, said Brett has worked during that time in “big-box retail” in New Hampshire and would try to return to the legal profession.

now that he’s been cleared in both criminal cases.

AP-ES-06-28-07 0951EDT

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