Agriprocessors trial scheduled for September
By Trish Mehaffey
CEDAR RAPIDS — The trial date for Agriprocessors on a 12-count federal indictment was reset to Sept. 8, but it's tentative depending on additional charges that may be filed next month.
U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade had a telephone status conference today with attorneys representing the company, former CEO Sholom Rubashkin, former operations manager Brent Beebe and Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Deegan who is prosecuting the case. The trial was initially set for Jan. 20. The 12 charges are: conspiracy to harbor undocumented workers for profit, harboring and aiding and abetting the harboring of undocumented workers for profit, conspiracy to commit document fraud, aiding and abetting document fraud, aiding and abetting aggravated identity theft and bank fraud.
The company and Rubashkin face all 12 counts, Beebe faces 10 of the counts and Amara and Levi face four counts.
Karina Freund, a former human resource employee, was also named in the indictment but she is pleading Wednesday. The other two listed on the indictment, Hosam Amara and Zeev Levi, former supervisors, haven't been arrested at this time because authorities can't find them.
Deegan gave Reade a summary of the case because she hasn't been involved up to this point and the attorneys gave her an estimate on how much discovery was involved in order to set a realistic court date.
The attorneys said all the personnel office files would be included in discovery, which is several file cabinets; 10 binders of just I-9s; 12 binders of grand jury testimony; a large amount of electronic discovery which would equal 100 banker boxes if in paper form; and so far, 10 boxes of records on the bank fraud charges.
Deegan said the investigation is ongoing and there will probably be a superseding indictment with additional charges filed in January.
Reade set the week of Sept. 8 as jury selection and the trial will start Sept. 14. She also set other deadlines for the attorneys regarding motions.