Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Petitioner only permitted access to grand jury materials upon showing of particularized need

United States v. Howell, No. L-98-0259, 2011 WL 219836 (D. Md. Jan. 21, 2011):

Secrecy of grand jury materials is the norm.  Nevertheless, Rule 6(e)(3)(E) enumerates five situations in which a court "may authorize disclosure . . . of a grand-jury matter."  Rule 6(e) (3)(E)(i) provides for disclosure of grand jury materials "preliminarily to or in connection with a judicial proceeding."

Grand jury secrecy can only be lifted in cases of "particularized need."  United States v. Procter & Gamble Co., 356 U.S. 677, 683 (1958).  In determining whether there is a "particularized need," the trial court must "balance the petitioner's need for release against the traditional public interest reasons for grand jury secrecy." In re Grand Jury Proceedings GJ-76-4 & GJ-75-3, 800 F.2d 1293, 1298-99 (4th Cir. 1986).  A particularized need will be found only in those cases where "the need for [disclosure] outweighs the public interest in secrecy."  Id. (quoting United States v. Sells Eng'g, Inc., 463 U.S. 418, 443 (1983)). "The moving party bears the burden of showing that the balance between secrecy and need weighs in its favor."  United States v. Foggo, 495 F.Supp.2d 672, 673 (E.D. Va. 2009) (citing In re Grand Jury Proceedings, 800 F.2d at 1298-99).

No comments:

Post a Comment