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Judge Delays Cunningham Discovery (BRIBERY)

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MADem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:31 AM
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Judge Delays Cunningham Discovery (BRIBERY)
Judge Delays Cunningham Discovery

By John Bresnahan
Roll Call Staff

October 19, 2005

A federal judge in California has granted a government motion to stay civil forfeiture proceedings against Rep. Duke Cunningham (R-Calif.) while the Justice Department prepares to file criminal charges in its probe of the GOP lawmaker.

In a decision handed down Friday, U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw ruled that granting discovery to Cunningham and his attorneys could jeopardize the DOJs criminal case against the lawmaker, and thus forbid it from taking place.

The government had initiated forfeiture proceedings against Cunningham to make sure that he did not sell his home in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., which federal prosecutors allege was partly financed by Cunningham using a bribe from a defense contractor who bought Cunninghams previous home. Cunningham has strongly denied that assertion, and his legal team worked to lift a type of lien, called a notice of lis pendens, against the Rancho Santa Fe home so that he could sell it. Sabraw agreed to that request recently, although the net proceeds from the sale must be placed in an escrow account as prosecutors prepare to charge Cunningham.

Officials in the U.S. Attorneys office for the Southern District of California argued that Cunninghams lawyers could use the discovery process in the forfeiture case to uncover information from the criminal probe, and Sabraw agreed with their argument. Specifically, the Government has shown that discovery in this civil proceeding would compromise the ongoing criminal investigation, ...Sabraw, though, would only agree to a two-month stay. Prosecutors had been seeking no deadline, although federal officials can seek an extension of the deadline she set. subscription req
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cascadiance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:34 AM
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1. Rethugs will find some way to stop his forced resignation!
They ultimately DON'T want a special election to be called (mandatory if he leaves office before February 2006). They don't want a "free-for-all" win with a plurality instead of a majority vote that would happen in such a special election that wouldn't have a primary or a runoff.

We HAVE to call our senators, etc. to stop this! In THIS case, I think Boxer or Feinstein should step in, since those of us directly affected with Cunningham as our representative, have noone else to go to on the hill to make sure that justice is served without delays!
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