Financier R. Allen Stanford, indicted on charges of running a $7 billion fraud, asked a federal judge in Houston to let his new attorneys make a request for access to his frozen assets to pay legal fees.

Financier R. Allen Stanford, indicted on charges of running a $7 billion fraud, asked a federal judge in Houston to let his new attorneys make a request for access to his frozen assets to pay legal fees.

Stanford on Tuesday told U.S. District Judge David Hittner that representation by Robert Luskin of Washington, D.C., was contingent upon success in winning access to some of his assets frozen by court order.

Stanford faces a 21-count indictment accusing him and four other people of conspiring to defraud investors through the sale of certificates of deposit issued by Antigua-based Stanford International Bank.

In a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in February, a federal judge in Dallas froze the financier’s personal and business assets and placed them under the control of receiver Ralph Janvey.

Stanford has denied all civil and criminal allegations of wrongdoing.

In a separate filing today in the SEC case, Janvey requested payment of $7.6 million in legal fees and expenses to cover his work as receiver. The request follows one for $20 million to pay for Janvey’s first eight weeks on the Stanford case.

Janvey said the 14 accounting and legal firms working with him continue to discount their services by 20 percent out of concerns for the victims of Stanford’s alleged fraud. That has resulted in a $6.7 million reduction in total charges during the receivership’s first 15 weeks, he said.

Closing some Stanford operations and gaining better information has helped him reduce weekly charges by 55 percent compared with his initial billings, Janvey said.

The SEC and an investors’ advocate objected to Janvey’s earlier fee request. Rose Romero, head of the SEC’s Fort Worth, Texas, office, told Hittner last week that Janvey’s billings equaled about $4,500 per hour.