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United States v. Dhaliwal

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


December 10, 2009

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
SUKHRAJ DHALIWAL DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Oliver W. Wanger Senior United States District Judge

APPLICATION TO EXTEND TIME FOR FILING OF MOTION FOR NEW TRIAL AND FOR DIRECTED VERDICT OF ACQUITTAL AND TO CONTINUE SENTENCING AND ORDER THEREON

TO THE HONORABLE OLIVER W. WANGER, JUDGE OF THE ABOVE-ENTITLED COURT, TO LAWRENCE G. BROWN , UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, AND TO KAREN A. ESCOBAR AND DEANNA L. MARTINEZ, ASSISTANT U.S. ATTORNEYS: NOWCOMES Defendant SUKHRAJ DHALIWAL, and respectfully requests an order from this Court extending the time for the filing of Rule 29 and Rule 33 Motions for Judgment of Acquittal and New trial from the current due date of December 14, 2009 to January 14, 2010 or such other time as the Court deems appropriate. Defendant's sentencing is currently set for February 15, 2010. Defendant requests that his sentencing be continued to March 15, 2010, or such other time as the Court shall deem appropriate.

Good cause exists for the granting of said motion in that former counsel Carl Faller was relieved as counsel by order of the court and current counsel for Mr. Dhaliwal was appointed on September 29, 2009. Although requested, counsel did not receive Mr. Faller's notes and file of client requests on the case until November 24, 2009. Counsel has not yet received the Presentence Report of Probation from Mr. Faller. Defense counsel for Mr. Dhaliwal has ordered, received and reviewed the trial transcripts. Those transcripts were provided commencing November 6, 2009. Upon reviewing the transcripts defense counsel discovered that there were several in camera hearings and sealed portions of the transcripts pertaining to Mr. Dhaliwal. Defense counsel has sought and obtained orders allowing these in camera proceedings to be provided to him. Defense counsel is currently waiting for a copy of the sealed portion of the transcripts for the January 5, 2009 hearing. That hearing pertained to a conflict of interest directly involving Defendant and his counsel. The undersigned is informed that this in camera proceeding may not have addressed the conflict that arose at trial, concerning payment of Mr. Dhaliwal's counsel's fees by a co-defendant being used as substantive evidence that Mr. Dhaliwal was involved in a drug conspiracy, and that was used against Mr. Dhaliwal at trial and in closing arguments.

Further, defense counsel has determined from the trial transcripts and counsel's recently provided file, that trial counsel had stopped being paid prior to trial, had been requested by Defendant to contact co-defendant Mr. Singh to be a witness and to move to sever Defendant's trial for that purpose, and had not attempted to contact Mr. Singh's counsel. Mr. Quade, who was Mr. Singh's trial counsel, has stated no one contacted him to see if Singh would testify for Mr. Dhaliwal. Mr. Quade has informed the undersigned that he will inquire of his client Mr. Singh as to whether and under what circumstances he would testify on behalf of Mr. Dhaliwal, and whether he would state that Mr. Dhaliwal was not involved in any drug transaction, and if so, what he would say. He is too busy to see Mr. Singh within the next two weeks, when these motions are currently due.

Based on the above, it is hereby requested that the deadline for filing motions for new trial and for an acquittal be extended to January 14, 2010. It is further requested that the sentencing in this matter be continued from February 15, 2010 to March 15, 2010 or such other date as the court may deem appropriate. The undersigned was previously granted an extension to file these motions in order to obtain the trial transcripts, which have with the exceptions noted, been reviewed and analyzed.

Dated: December 2, 2009

Respectfully submitted,

W. Scott Quinlan, Attorney for Defendant, SUKHRAJ DHALIWAL

ORDER:

Based on the above, and good cause appearing therefore, it is hereby ordered that the deadline for filing motions for new trial and for an acquittal by Defendant Sukhraj Dhaliwal is extended to January 14, 2010. The sentencing of Defendant Sukhraj Dhaliwal is extended to March 15, 2010.

IT IS SO ORDERED

20091210

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