In Brief: Perpetual Motions Plague BetonSports Case

21 August 2008

Attorneys for Gary S. Kaplan, the jailed founder of BetonSports, on Tuesday renewed a still-undecided motion for his immediate release from custody.

Citing Magistrate Judge Mary Ann Medler's detention order dated June 13, 2007, Mr. Kaplan's defense team claims that "the court has detained Kaplan for nearly seventeen months without setting a trial date, without setting a date for a pretrial conference, and without ruling on his motion requesting release on Speedy Trial Act grounds.

"His extended pretrial detention is not permitted by the Bail Reform Act or the Speedy Trial Act and is violating his due process rights," according to court documents.

In May, Mr. Kaplan's lawyers filed the initial motion for his release based on the abovementioned statutes claiming he was due a "review by the court and should be released from pretrial detention."

Judge Medler, of Federal District Court in St. Louis, Mo., has yet to issue a ruling on the May motion.

In this week's renewed motion, Mr. Kaplan's lawyers argue that his wife and children have now established themselves in St. Louis, and that his children have completed a year of school in the area; but because of his prolonged detention, he is being deprived of the ability to participate in the upbringing of his children.

Under the Speedy Trial Act, defendants must be indicted within 30 days of arrest and tried within 70 days of indictment, or the day they appear before the court -- whichever is later.

The Bail Reform Act, meanwhile, dictates that a defendant shall be released on their own personal recognizance or other set of conditions while they are awaiting trial.

IGN's Take

Once again Mr. Kaplan has taken a turn toward the ironic. He wants to be released because he has been held in custody too long without a trial date being set, but the government cannot even come close to setting a date until the pretrial motions stop.

Click here to view Mr. Kaplan’s motion for release from custody.

Emily Swoboda is the senior staff writer at IGamingNews. She lives in St. Louis, Mo.