Defense motions are due by Sept. 12, with the prosecution scheduled to respond by Sept. 25.
A federal judge on Thursday set a Jan. 9 trial date in the corruption case against Ramapo Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence and former town lawyer Aaron Troodler.
Prosecutors estimated they would need to call more than 30 witnesses and the trial could take four to five weeks to complete. Attorneys for St. Lawrence and Troodler didn’t comment on those estimates.
U.S. District Court Judge Cathy Seibel gave the defense team until Sept. 12 to file any motions and the prosecution until Sept. 25 to respond.
Prosecutors estimated they turned over more than 350,000 documents and more than 1.5 million pages, as well as hours of audio recordings and 10 boxes of Ramapo documents. The recordings involve the supervisor and other town officials and employees.
“There’s a ton of paper to review,” said Patrick Burke, a former federal prosecutor and one of the two Suffern-based lawyers representing St. Lawrence, before the hearing. His son Michael, is the lead attorney for St. Lawrence. “We’re going to need more time.”
Burke asked Seibel for another three months to review the prosecution’s mounds of paper evidence, including relevant documents from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC filed a separate civil case against St. Lawrence, Troodler, Ramapo Town Attorney Michael Klein and Nat Oberman, the town deputy finance director and receiver of taxes.
Troodler’s attorney, Joseph Poluka also asked for “a little time to get our hands dirty with the documents.
Seibel, a former federal prosecutor, said she wanted to press forward and not slow-track the case. While she said she understood the amount of pages could be daunting and a lot of “person-power” will be required, she told the lawyers, “We also know we don’t have to read every single page.”
“I don’t think you need 90 days,” she said. “You can have a bank record with 1,000 pages but only two pages make a difference in the case.”
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