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United States v. Zhang

June 8, 2009

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
MICHAEL MING ZHANG, AKA "JOHN ZHANG," AKA "JOHN WEN," DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Manuel L. Real United States District Judge

FINDINGS AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO SUPPRESS EVIDENCE

Motion Hearing Date: 5/11/09

Motion Hearing Time: 1:30 pm

Location: Courtroom of the Honorable Manuel L. Real

Defendant Michael Ming Zhang's Motion to Suppress Evidence came on for hearing on May 11, 2009. The Court has reviewed the materials submitted by the parties, including, but not limited to, the following: 1) Defendant's Motion to Suppress Evidence filed on April 20, 2009, and the Declaration of Thomas Kielty, together with the exhibit thereto, filed concurrently therewith;

2) the Government's Opposition to Defendant's Motion to Suppress Evidence filed on April 27, 2009, and the Declarations of Bonnie L. Hobbs and Special Agent Nathan N. Surface, together with exhibits, filed concurrently therewith; and 3) Defendant's Reply to Government's Opposition to Suppress Evidence filed on May 8, 2009. The Court also has considered the testimony of defendant and the argument of both parties at the hearing on May 11, 2009. Having considered all of these items, the Court hereby makes the following findings and DENIES defendant's motion for the reasons set forth below.

II. FINDINGS OF FACT

Having considered the Declaration of Thomas Kielty proffered by defendant and exhibit thereto; the Declarations of Bonnie L. Hobbs and Special Agent Nathan N. Surface proffered by the government and exhibits thereto; and the testimony of defendant at the hearing on May 11, 2009, the Court hereby FINDS the following facts:

1. On May 7,2008, at approximately 5:30 p.m., the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") obtained a search warrant for the premises located at 12225 Richfield Drive, Rancho Cucamonga, California 91739 (the "Subject Premises"). The warrant was issued by United States Magistrate Judge Paul L. Abrams at 5:30 p.m. The warrant commanded Special Agents of the FBI or any other authorized agents to search the Subject Premises on or before ten days after the issuance of the warrant, during the "daytime--6:00 A.M. to 10:00 P.M." Federal agents applied for the warrant after a state search warrant had been served on the Subject Premises earlier the same day.

2. The federal warrant sought evidence of violations of United States export laws and laws relating to smuggling and trafficking in counterfeit goods. Specifically, the federal warrant listed as items to be seized, among other things, counterfeit electronic components and authentic electronic components that may have been used as samples for the manufacture of counterfeit components, as well as labels and packaging for counterfeit components. The state search warrant also sought counterfeit items, primarily "Sony" products.

3. The Subject Premises was the residence of defendant, from which defendant also ran his business, J.J. Electronics, and consisted of a house and two attached garages. The team searching the Subject Premises consisted of approximately ten Special Agents of the FBI, and also included agents from other federal agencies, including the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Department of Commerce, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

4. The agents who obtained the warrant drove the warrant from downtown Los Angeles to the Subject Premises in Rancho Cucamonga. They arrived in Rancho Cucamonga with the warrant at approximately 7:00 p.m. After they arrived with the warrant, all of the agents on the search team read the warrant and prepared to execute it.

5. At approximately 8:50 p.m., the search team assembled outside the Subject Premises. At approximately 9:25, the searching agents entered the residence, presented the search warrant to defendant, who read the search warrant, and began the search.

6. Defendant, his wife, and their young twin sons were present during the search. At defendant's request, agents searched the children's bedroom and the surrounding rooms first, and the children were permitted to remain in their room throughout the course of the search. The children were asleep in their beds by 11:00 p.m. As needed throughout the entire search, Mrs. Zhang was permitted to attend to her personal needs while accompanied by an agent. Mr. Zhang remained seated on a couch in ...


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