Saturday, May 17, 2008

Analyzing the New Indictment in the Barry Bonds Case

The government issued a superseding indictment in the prosecution of Barry Bonds following the court's grant of a motion to dismiss filed by defense counsel. (see here) In essence, the defense argued that there were too many different instances within each count, making it difficult to refute each charge. Bonds was given what he asked for - in a new indictment that charged more counts - but provided specificity to each count.

Basically it puts the defense and prosecution back to square one with little difference in the actual conduct alleged.  One benefit to the defense now, is that prosecutors will not be able to claim a victory by proving one statement in a count that involves four different alleged acts.  One downside may be if it goes to trial and the jury decides upon a compromise verdict, there are now more counts to work with.

One can almost hear the prosecutor's opening statement in this case -- if there is a trial down the road.  It might go something like this --  "this is a case about lying."  As a matter of fact, maybe the prosecutor can borrow the script from the Martha Stewart trial.

Superseding Indictment - Download bonds_new_indictment_508.pdf

(esp)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/whitecollarcrime_blog/2008/05/new-indictment.html

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