Indicted Rep. Michael Grimm Appears in New York Court
Embattled Rep. Michael G. Grimm appeared in court Monday, but neither he nor his legal team would reveal the next step in the New York Republican’s legal battle — including whether he will seek a speedy trial to resolve 20 counts of fraud and tax evasion before the midterm elections.
“Now we are in litigation, and we are bound by the rules of conduct, and we are not going to be trying the case in the press,” Elizabeth Kase, Grimm’s attorney, told CQ Roll Call during a brief phone call following the 11 a.m. hearing from which Grimm departed without making statements to the press.
It’s not looking likely that a resolution will come anytime soon, however: According to news reports
from those on the scene , the case has been adjourned until July 21 to allow Kase and her colleagues to review over 70,000 pages of documents and 8,000 emails that government prosecutors are using as evidence against Grimm. Those documents will be turned over to the defense team starting Monday, with Kase suggesting to CQ Roll Call that she had been waiting for them to be made available “weeks ago.”
U.S. District Court Judge Pamela K. Chen, who was presiding over Monday’s hearing from a federal courthouse in Brooklyn, reportedly said that she would categorize Grimm’s case as “complex.” That determination also indicates Election Day could come and go before Grimm is compelled to take the stand.
Grimm has been charged with breaking the law in connection to the health food store he owned and operated prior to his election to Congress in 2010. The case includes allegations of filing false tax returns, committing mail fraud and withholding more than $1 million from the federal government.
Following news of the indictment late last month, Grimm maintained his innocence and vowed to stay in office and seek re-election for a third term.
GOP leaders haven’t called for him to resign from Congress, but Grimm agreed to step down from his seat on the Financial Services Committee for the duration of the investigation into his alleged misconduct.
That move appeared to appease leaders for the time being. Grimm also has some support in his district: Over the weekend, supporters on Staten Island rallied in solidarity.
“I’m still here, baby!” he cried.