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United States v. Holland

United States District Court, S.D. Florida, Miami Division

April 2, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
v.
JOHN HOLLAND, Defendant.

          OMNIBUS REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS ON MOTIONS TO STAY (OR TO EXTEND THE PRETRIAL MOTION FILING DEADLINE) AND TO CONTINUE THE TRIAL DATE AND EXCLUDE TIME UNDER THE SPEEDY TRIAL ACT

          JONATHAN GOODMAN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         A federal grand jury indicted Defendant John Holland (“Holland”) on four counts relating to a criminal fraud scheme of more than $400 million at Tenet Healthcare Corporation (“Tenet”), where he was the senior vice president of operations. The Undersigned recently entered an Order [ECF No. 36] denying Holland's motion to transfer the case to the Northern District of Georgia under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 21(b). United States District Judge Jose E. Martinez referred to me two other motions filed by Holland: (1) his motion to stay the proceedings until the Court decided the venue-transfer motion (or to extend the deadline for filing pretrial motions) and (2) his motion to designate the case as complex, continue the trial date and exclude the time under the Speedy Trial Act. [ECF Nos. 22; 27; 29].

         The United States filed a consolidated response opposing both motions, though it advised that it would not oppose a trial continuance of 30 to 60 days and a deadline of 14 days from entry of a Court Order to file pretrial motions (other than motions in limine) and Holland filed a consolidated reply to both motions. [ECF Nos. 33; 34].

         For reasons outlined in more detail below, the Undersigned respectfully recommends that the Court continue the trial for at least 90 days beyond the current April 3, 2017 trial date and provide Holland with 45 days (from the date of this Report) to file motions.

         Pursuant to Local Rule 88.9(c), his deadline to file motions is March 1, 2017 (28 days from the date of arraignment -- February 1, 2017). [ECF No. 10]. The motion-filing deadline has expired, but Holland filed a motion seeking additional time on February 24, 2017, before the deadline expired.

         Because the Undersigned does not control Judge Martinez's calendar, I cannot pick a new trial date. Instead, all I can do is recommend that a continuance of some duration (e.g., 90 days) be provided and leave it to Judge Martinez to pinpoint the new trial date (assuming that Judge Martinez adopts my Report and Recommendations).

         Factual Background

         Holland's primary argument in favor of a trial continuance and an extension of the motion-filing deadline is the volume of materials which the Government recently produced. Not only is the production voluminous, Holland says, but it was allegedly produced in a disorganized manner. He argues that he would be deprived of a fair trial if his counsel were required to review all the evidence against him in this complex case by the current trial date.

         The Government contends that Holland is well-positioned to go to trial under the current schedule because (1) he has known about the case for years; (2) he has received 413, 000 documents from Tenet during the four-year investigation; and (3) the Government provided him with “prompt, comprehensive, and unprecedented discovery within 14 days of arraignment.” [ECF No. 33, p. 8]. The Government also objects to Holland's requests because it says he is seeking an indeterminate continuance.

         According to Holland's reply, the United States' four-year investigation involved 450 witness interviews, the testimony of approximately 60 grand jury witnesses, the production of 2 million documents totaling more than 7 million pages and more than 600 boxes of hard copy documents. He argues that the Government's production cannot be equated to his review of the 413, 000 documents previously received from Tenet. He says there are more than 1.3 million new, unreviewed documents in the Government's productions, amounting to more than 4 million unreviewed pages.

         Moreover, setting aside the production of actual documents, Holland points to the recent availability of more than 550 grand jury transcripts and interview summaries which have been made available to the defense for in-person inspection in Washington, D.C.

         As outlined in Holland's reply, the defense team has already devoted a significant amount of time to document review but needs considerably more time. For example, Holland advises that a team from his e-discovery vendor spent between 90 to 100 hours in a 2-week interval preparing documents for review by a team of 50 contract attorneys. In addition to the burdens associated solely from the volume of materials, Holland contends that the Government's production logs “are not detailed and do not provide clear, specific descriptions of what is contained in the litany of different files listed.” [ECF No. 34, p. 5].

         Analysis

         The Undersigned need not specify the precise number of boxes of documents which were recently produced but which were not earlier available to Holland in order to make a recommendation here. The documentation is voluminous. Regardless of whether the case involves 600 boxes, 500 boxes or a mere 400 boxes of documents, the case is undoubtedly ...


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