New York Federal Criminal Practice Blog
September 12, 2009

EDNY Judge Stands By Previous Suppression Ruling

In United States v. Matos, 2009 WL 2883054 (E.D.N.Y. September 03, 2009), the government got a do-over, but not the result it sought.  After EDNY Judge Garaufis had suppressed drugs seized in a “dropsy” case, finding the testimony of the government’s witnesses “incredible,” “unfathomable” and “absurd” (see here), the government moved for reconsideration and was given permission to present the testimony of no less than six additional agents, as well as additional testimony from the two Judge Garaufis had already found incredible.  The lady clearly protesteth too much . . . In this second decision, parsing the testimony like a slow motion camera – not missing the slightest inconsistency (and there were many) – Judge Garaufis refused to alter his original conclusion, concluding:

The court remains unpersuaded by the Government’s theory that the evidence against Matos was obtained through a series of fantastic coincidences: that, at the precise moment that the team decided it was necessary to seek entry to the apartment, an individual exited the residence, tossed evidence of criminal contraband in the plain view of the officers, and then invited six armed officers into the apartment – all the while spontaneously volunteering incriminating statements and substantial quantities of narcotics to the officers. The court did not find this account to be credible at the May Hearing, and the testimony presented at the Supplemental Hearing has not changed the court’s view.
Lawyers: Guy Oksenhendler, Jay H. Schwitzman (defendant); AUSA James Donald Gatta

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