As an observation:
I notice several entries in this discussion suggesting more information of the type of “sin” is essential in order to answer a strategic question. I can’t say I agree.
A particular behavior is either an offense for which a JW can be expelled for, or it isn’t.
Also, though there are rouge elder bodies, typically a judicial committee will show at least a semblance of following Watchtower policy, and how the hearing progresses is governed by that policy. Hence in general what works for one punishable offense works for another punishable offense in terms of strategically responding to the process Watchtower puts in place. There are aspects of this process that can be exploited, and should be exploited in defense of the accused by the accused.
What’s surprising to me is that more here do not talk about what can be utilized for defense within Watchtower’s judicial protocol. My best guess is that though these opportunities exist—meager though they are—they are not more realized because Watchtower has not taken time to train its appointees on how to navigate them for purpose of defense by the accused, and most here speak from their training from Watchtower and related experience.
A good example of what I’m talking about has to do with preparedness.
Before a body of elders forms a judicial committee for a hearing it should first have enough information to hold a reasonable belief that a “sin” occurred. In particular a “sin” for which a JW can be expelled for. Usually this means someone has shared information with an elder or elders. In that case that elder or elders had opportunity to ask questions of the source. Afterward, if the body of elders forms a judicial committee on the basis of that source, the judicial committee members will each review material in preparation for the hearing. On the other hand, the accused typically gets no opportunity to prepare their defense. Yet under Watchtower policy the accused is completely within their rights request the hearing be continued to a later date in order for the accused to prepare a proper defense, if that is what they want to do. I’ve never seen this denied except when the accused had already made a statement during the hearing that was self-condemnatory. In effect, a confession. Otherwise I’ve never seen a request for continuance denied when the purpose was to prepare a defense.
There are other items that can likewise be exploited for defense.