Best Criminal Defense Attorney - 2005
Tabbing Rusty Hardin as Houston's best criminal defense lawyer is like naming Lance Armstrong as Best Bicyclist from Texas -- it's not exactly a groundbreaking pick. But Hardin proved again this year why he remains the name that should be on the speed-dial of every athlete or deep-pocketed Houstonian who might ever conceivably get into trouble. After a ton of bad pretrial publicity -- the kind that comes when it's discovered a city icon has fathered 14 kids by nine women -- he won an acquittal on child-molestation charges for former Houston Rocket Calvin Murphy. And Hardin's only notable loss in his criminal defense career, the conviction of Arthur Andersen for its part in Enron, was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court this year. It was another big year in a long string of them for Hardin.