In a series of mixed but mostly negative legal messages for embattled defendants Rick, Terri and Ryin Reese, Judge Robert C. Brack of the United States District Court for the District of New Mexico issued rulings last Tuesday on multiple motions related to the case.
Arrested almost two years ago for allegedly knowingly selling guns to cartel members while operating a New Mexico gun store, all Reese family members were found not guilty on the most serious charges of conspiracy. Additionally and significantly, money laundering charges against them were dismissed. Husband Rick, wife Terri and son Ryin were convicted on a handful of lesser charges of making false statements on forms, basically under the presumption that they should have known federal agents were lying. Rick and Ryin were released on bond in February and Terri was released on bond last year. Son Remington was cleared of all charges, and a new trial for the outstanding convictions has been ordered following Judge Brack’s ruling that the prosecutor withheld evidence from the jury.
The first setback for the family was having their motion to dismiss the remaining counts denied.
“The Tenth Circuit has held that ‘a violation of due process under Brady does not entitle a defendant to an acquittal, but only to a new trial in which the convicted defendant has access to the wrongfully withheld evidence,’” Judge Brack ordered.
The second order was a setback for the government, as Judge Brack denied the “Government’s Motion to Strike the Claims and Answers of Rick Reese and Terri Reese With Respect to Certain Defendants In Rem.” This involved assets and funds of the family business, Old Ironsides LLC d/b/a New Deal Shooting Sports, with the government’s position actually being the Reeses lacked standing as claimants.
Judge Brack’s third order denied the Reese’s Motions for Partial Release of Assets, a request that the Court release cash, gold, and silver to allow the family to pay their legal expenses.
“In support of their Motion for Partial Release of Assets, Rick Reese and Terri Reese submitted the affidavit of Rick Reese in which he states that the Reeses have no liquid assets, they are seeking employment, and they need the cash and precious metals to pay living expenses and attorneys’ fees.” Judge Brack acknowledged, nonetheless ruling against the motions citing “Defendants’ relatives have significant assets and have assisted them financially during the course of these proceedings [and] Defendants’ local and national supporters have established legal defense funds to pay Defendants’ legal expenses. “
Judge Brack’s opinion made no mention that relatives and supporters are under no legal burden to continue with financial assistance, nor did he address the likelihood that enough funds can be raised on a sustainable basis to pay for crushing and mounting legal expenses.
The final order was a mixed decision of sorts, with Judge Brack approving a stay on civil forfeiture actions until the conclusion of criminal proceedings, but denying Rick and Terri Reese’s motion for partial release of assets.
Meanwhile, the prosecution against the Reese family, now approaching the two-year mark since their ordeal first began and the one-year mark since the defendants were found not guilty on the brunt of the charges, the government continues to enjoy virtually unlimited assets with which to continue the prosecution. What that means is, the Reese family must continue to hope for supportive Americans to step forward to assist with their defense.
As Judge Brack so noted as he essentially sentenced the family to a de facto Blanche Dubois defense, one in which they must depend on the kindness of strangers, supporter donations can be sent to the Reese Defense Fund, Attention Patricia Arias, First Savings Bank, 520 South Gold, Deming, NM 88030. Additionally, The Firearms Coalition advises they have set up an online donation page at their website, as has the United States Justice Foundation.
The latest GUNS Magazine “Rights Watch” column is online, and you can read it before the magazine hits the stands. All aboard for the Bloomberg bus bust. Click here to read “Magical Misery Tour.”
If you’re a regular Gun Rights Examiner reader and believe it provides news and perspectives you won’t find in the mainstream media, please subscribe to this column and help spread the word by sharing links, promoting it on social media like Facebook (Dan) and Twitter (@dcodrea), and telling your like-minded friends about it. And for more commentary, be sure to visit “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance.”