Judge refuses to dismiss Stanford shredding case

AP News
Posted: Dec 30, 2009 12:35 PM

A federal judge in Florida has refused to dismiss charges of illegal document shredding against two former employees of disgraced financier Allen Stanford.

Magistrate Judge Robin Rosenbaum on Wednesday rejected defense claims that prosecutors intimidated a key defense witness so that he won't testify in the trial of Thomas Raffanello and Bruce Perraud. The two men are charged with illegally shredding thousands of documents as Stanford's banking empire was collapsing earlier this year.

Prosecutors have refused to give immunity to witness Anthony Belovich because he also may face criminal charges. Belovich has invoked his Fifth Amendment right not to testify.

Rosenbaum's ruling still must be reviewed by a federal district judge.