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David Carruthers finally released today on million-dollar bail

carruthersDavid Carruthers was released today under “house arrest” on US$1 million (£527,000) bail under the conditions set on 31st July and confirmed in a hearing today that ended at 9:35AM Missouri time.

His release had been expected for the past few days but it took until today (Wednesday, August 16th) to comply with all of the conditions of release; for example it was a requirement he get a dedicated phone line installed at the hotel in Clayton, St. Louis where he will stay under “house arrest”.

He will be electronically tagged and not be allowed to leave the hotel except for court appearances, meetings with his attorneys* or medical emergencies. During the hearing which lasted for a few minutes this morning, Carruthers asked only one question – to clarify if the “house arrest” was for 24 hours a day. U.S. Magistrate Judge for the First Eastern District of Missouri, Mary Ann L. Medler confirmed that it was.

As far as we know, David raised the funds himself, with none coming from, for example, BETonSPORTS as a corporate entity – and he must fund his own defense (although it has been rumoured previously that BETonSPORTS Plc’s insurance might cover it).

*David’s legal team now includes lawyers from Clayton; N. Scott Rosenblum and Adam D. Fein of Rosenblum, Schwartz, Rogers & Glass.

The prosecutors and Carrruthers have agreed to waive their right to a speedy trial, with the judge agreeing that this is a complex case as defined by Title 18 of the United States Code. Regarding the pace of the trial, here are the current guidelines related to discovery:

THE COURT ORDERS THAT:
(1) no later than September 11, 2006, the United States provide access to and a listing of documents to be disclosed to each defendant;
(2) no later than October 10, 2006, the United States provide access to and a
listing of remaining documents available for review by defense counsel;
(3) no later than December 11, 2006, defense counsel shall file requests for
additional discovery, if they deem such to be appropriate; the United States shall
respond to any such requests no later than December 22, 2006, and disclosure
pursuant to Rule 16 shall be completed no later than January 12, 2006;
(4) no later than February 1, 2007, all parties shall file all evidentiary and motions in limine; responses shall be due by February 15, 2007, and replies shall be filed by February 22, 2007; and
(5) a pre-trial hearing and trial date will be set by the Court after all motions,
responses and replies have been filed.

It looks like the trial may not even be underway when the November Congressional elections are over. It looks like those in favour of prohibition have got their wish, and Carruthers is well and truly muzzled until after election time. Of course it would be refreshing to be proved wrong in this regard.

The evidentiary hearing (preliminary hearing) in the criminal case is still set for Monday August 21st at 9:30AM. Judge Medler has granted a motion by the prosecuting attorneys for a protection order against disclosure of documents provided to defense counsel by the prosecution. Such documents can now only be shown to the parties in the case, potential witnesses, and the employees and consultants of the defense counsel.

So, it is now crystal clear that the prosecution really wants this case to be kept as much behind closed doors as possible. So much for the open kind of justice we all thought was the norm, when we grew up learning about the US justice system watching Perry Mason or Columbo.

The District Attorney’s ‘Significant Cases’ summary page for the case is here:
www.usdoj.gov/usao/moe/files/significant_cases/betonsports.html