Anand Jon defense attorney Eric Chase vented his frustration in court this morning over lack of cooperation from Google. Since October 10, he claimed, he’d been asking the Santa Monica office of the search-engine giant to authenticate emails sent to Jon by Amanda C, who has accused his client of sexual assault. So far he’s been rebuffed by the corporation’s legal department, which, Chase says, won’t even provide him with the name of its custodian of records. Judge David Wesley has obliged Chase by issuing an arrest warrant for the elusive custodian – a warrant that has been put on hold, however, because the individual’s name and date of birth are as yet unknown.
“I can’t just go around arresting people,” Wesley said. “I need information . . . and then I’ll have them arrested.”
After trial was recessed for lunch Chase again raised the issue of email authentication. (Earlier, MySpace representative Ingrid Moran had stymied Chase’s exploration of Amanda C’s MySpace page by denying on the witness stand that she could verify much about the page without going back to her company cubicle in El Segundo.) During the recess Chase heatedly asked that Amanda, who had appeared as a prosecution witness October 10, be recalled to the stand this afternoon. When prosecutor Mara McIlvain claimed Amanda lived in New Jersey, Chase testily disagreed.
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“No she doesn’t,” he said, “she lives here . . . in Los Angeles.”
Judge Wesley ordered prosecutors to try to locate and produce Amanda by this afternoon, or Wednesday morning at the latest. Still, he was not pleased with Chase.
“This is not an inquiry I appreciate, Mr. Chase. Cool down – now.”
By then news had arrived that Google had returned the defense’s latest phone call and so perhaps Chase will get both Amanda C and her emails by the resumption of trial this afternoon.