Feds say they won't hand over witness statements to Lakin's attorney

Steve Gonzalez May 3, 2007, 8:30am

Tom Lakin

Scott Rosenblum

Federal prosecutors say they don't intend to allow Tom Lakin's criminal attorney access to witness statements or grand jury testimony until it is required to do so by the rules of discovery.

In response to Lakin's motion for discovery, Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Clark wrote that the government has evidence that one of Lakin's investigators engaged in harassing and intimidating conduct toward at least one of their potential witnesses.

Lakin was indicted on drug and sex charges by a federal grand jury last month.

Lakin filed a motion for discovery with U.S. District Judge J. Phil Gilbert last week asking the government to hand over the names and addresses of people who have knowledge pertaining to the case, any and all arrest and conviction records of the witnesses that the government plans to call as a witness and the written statements of all the people who the government does not plan to call as a witness.

But Clark claims the government has no duty to disclose the names and addresses of persons who have knowledge pertaining to this case, or who have been interviewed by the government or its agents in connection with this case.

"The Government does intend to provide arrest and conviction records, if any, of any person the Government will call as a trial witness, and any written statements of non-trial witnesses that are discoverable; however, the Government does not intend to produce such records until shortly before such witnesses appear at trial, and if discoverable, such statements from non-trial witnesses will be produced shortly before trial in accordance with the Jenck's Act," Clark wrote.

Represented by Scott Rosenblum and Gilbert Sison of Rosenblum, Schwartz, Rogers & Glass in St. Louis, Lakin also wants the names and whereabouts of any informer who gave information that led to his arrest.

Lakin has also asked for the transcript of testimony given by any person before the grand jury, including the precise nature of any statements attributable to him.

He is also asking for any and all written or recorded statements made by or purported to have been made by him, along with the substance of any oral statement that the government intends to offer in evidence at the trial.

Lakin wants the government to hand over "any and all instruments, documents or other tangible objects" obtained during their investigation including, all currency, documents, instruments, or other writing obtained.

He is requesting books, papers, documents and/or other tangible objects that the government relied in returning the indictment.

Lakin also wants all written reports of any chemical analysis of the substance seized along with the test results, dates and determinations as to the nature or weight of the substance.

Lakin further asks for any material that may serve to mitigate punishment including any evidence impeaching or contradicting testimony of government witnesses or instructions to witnesses not to speak or discuss the case with the defense counsel.

Clark claims there is no authority for Lakin to ask for the names and locations of people who gave information that led to his arrest.

"Information provided by confidential informants is privileged," Clark wrote. "The confidential informant privilege 'will not yield to permit a mere fishing expedition, nor upon bare speculation that the information may possibly prove useful.'"

Clark added, "Defendant's request is a mere fishing expedition. Consequently, the Government will not produce the requested records."

Clark said relevant portions of transcripts will be supplied to the defense at or near the time of trial.

Gilbert has not set a hearing date on the motion, however set the case for case management and calendar control on May 9, in East St. Louis at 10 a.m.

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