Friday, June 11, 2010

U.S. v. Bonds (9th Cir. - June 11, 2010)

Barry Bonds is going to have a much more enjoyable weekend thanks to the Ninth Circuit. Which this morning affirmed a hearsay ruling that's going to make his prosecution for making false statements to the grand jury very, very difficult.

It's hard to prove that your results came back positive when the only dude who can confirm that the samples came from you -- the guy you gave 'em to -- refuses to testify. Sure, as a result, he's in jail on contempt charges. But there are two people who can authenticate those samples, one of 'em who refuses to testify and the other of which (you) has a right not to. The U.S. can't use the testimony of a guy saying that he was told by X that the samples came from Y. That's hearsay. And it can't use the lab test results that have your name on 'em for the same reason.

Judge Bea dissents, but it outvoted by Judges Schroeder and Reinhardt.

Consider this home run number 763 for Bonds. Just don't forget the asterisk.