Lakin prosecutor concerned about witness intimidation

Steve Gonzalez Aug. 13, 2007, 8:00am

A federal prosecutor working the case against Thomas Lakin doesn't want to be forced to turn over his witness list.

In a response to Lakin's motion for discovery and inspection, assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Clark pleaded with District Judge Phil Gilbert that there are "legitimate concerns about potential witness intimidation in this case."

"This arises, in part, from the complaint of at least one witness of harassment by one of Lakin's investigators, and in part from the beliefs of several witnesses that defendant has a reputation as a powerful, well-connected lawyer who is potentially able to intimidate and harass potential witnesses," Clark wrote in a motion filed Aug. 9.

Lakin was indicted by a federal grand jury in April on drug and sex offense charges.

Clark said the government intends to file a list of witnesses that he may call on the eve of trial and he will supply Lakin a copy the same time it is filed with the court.

"Such a list will provide the Court and defense with the opportunity to inquire of potential jurors whether or not they are acquainted with any of the potential witnesses," Clark wrote.

Clark also indicated that there was a second investigation into Lakin.

"There was an additional confidential informant in the broader investigation related to this case who provided information to support a search warrant," Clark wrote.

"However, that information did not pertain in any way to the allegations contained in the Superseding Indictment, and the Government does not intend to use the information at trial."

Clark argues he is not required to disclose the name of the second informant, but will disclose the name of the informant that was used to secure the indictment against Lakin.

Clark also agreed to let Lakin review all of his notes.

Lakin is asking Gilbert to order 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.

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.

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