McCann Defense Seeks 2nd Delay in Fraud Trial

By Jeremy Coumbes on July 13, 2021 at 4:25pm

The trial of a former state senator could be delayed again as defense attorneys say they need computerized help to sift through a massive amount of discovery information.

Assistant Federal Public Defender Rosana E. Brown filed a motion to continue the trial of Former Senator Sam McCann in U.S. District Court on July 6th.

McCann was indicted on February 23rd on 9 counts: 7 counts of fraudulent misuse of campaign money and providing false tax returns to the IRS; 2 counts of money laundering; and 1 count of tax evasion by willfully filing a false tax return in 2018.

McCann pleaded not guilty to the charges that allege he illegally spent more than $200,000 in campaign funds on cars, debts, other personal expenses, and pay for himself.

In the motion filed last week, Brown asserts that the complexity of the charges combined with the volume of information turned over requires her to seek a contract for discovery review software that is capable of organizing more than 64,000 pages of discovery information.

Brown was already granted a 90-day continuance in March so she could “review discovery, conduct investigation, and negotiate with the government,” according to the filing. According to a report by the Journal-Courier, acting U.S. Attorney Douglas J. Quivey says that no more than 90 days is appropriate for a continuance in the case.

Brown has argued that “it is unreasonable to expect adequate preparation for pretrial proceedings or for the trial itself within the time limits established.”

McCann was appointed a public defender during the February hearing after telling the court he was unemployed and over $53,000 in debt, with just $500 in his personal accounts. He is currently free on bond.

As a condition of his release, the federal court required him to surrender his firearms and FOID card, which according to a report by the State Journal-Register, totaled about 75 firearms. McCann also is forbidden to travel outside of Illinois or the St. Louis metropolitan area and must look for work.

If convicted of the charges, McCann could be sentenced to more than 45 years in prison and fined up to $1 million.