Late Wednesday, US Magistrate Judge Wallace Capel GRANTED Ronnie Gilley’s motion to compel access to information pertaining to the information provided to the prosecution by flipped co-defendant Jarrod Massey, along with some other materials that had already been provided by the government. Wednesday’s order basically wraps up some of the loose ends left hanging by the Court’s January 11 ruling on the defendants’ access to wiretap binders and FBI interview documents (form FD-302).
But Capel also DENIED two key requests made by the defendant—access to the technical specifications and capabilities of electronic surveillance equipment and access to what are known as wiretap “session histories.” Session histories are user-created synopses summarizing the content of the intercepted communication.
Gilley had requested information on the make, models and serial numbers of the equipment federal agents had used during the electronic surveillance phase of the investigation (believed to have occurred between October 2009 and May 2010). He had also requested the session histories of other recorded conversations.
The government objected to these requests on two grounds: (1) that knowledge of the technical specifications of the equipment would alert criminals, educate them on critical investigative techniques and devise methods to thwart them and (2) that releasing the session histories would compromise ongoing investigations.
This has to be a chilling, perhaps even horrifying development for those who might be connected to La Fambilia and who might face charges in the weeks or months ahead. The government is all but admitting that they have used highly advanced technology to monitor the communications of suspected criminals, and that at the time of the filings leading up to Wednesday’s ruling, they were still developing evidence in an ongoing matter.
Let’s turn the page, and see what the next chapter brings.