Yesterday, attorneys representing Barry Landau, the collector accused of stealing and selling records held by the Maryland Historical Society, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, the Connecticut Historical Society, and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library, filed a motion to suppress all evidence found during a search of Landau's Manhattan apartment. Judging from its content, it seems likely that Landau's attorneys plan to argue that Landau's companion, Jason James Savedoff, who pled guilty to the charges against him on 20 September 2011, committed all of the crimes of which Landau is accused.
Given that Saveoff physically possessed all the stolen materials recovered after he and Landau were arrested at the Maryland Historical Society in July 2011 and is cooperating with prosecutors, I'm not particularly surprised by this line of argument. Do I think it's a good one? Emphatically, no -- by all accounts, Landau is a seasoned researcher and Savedoff was new to the ways of archival research -- but I won't be sitting on the jury that determines Landau's guilt or innocence.
The copy of the motion that appears below was downloaded from Public Access to Electronic Court Records (PACER). I am posting it here so that interested archivists can read it. Downloaded PACER documents may be freely distributed, so please feel free to share it with others.
At present, Landau's trial is currently scheduled to begin on 13 February 2012 and is expected to last 5-6 days.
Barry H. Landau Motion to Suppress 2011-12-13
Thanks to "anonymous archivist" for drawing my attention to the filing of this motion.