U.S. v. Hsia

Decision Date19 October 1998
Docket NumberNo. CR. 98-0057(PLF).,CR. 98-0057(PLF).
Citation24 F.Supp.2d 63
PartiesUNITED STATES of America, v. Maria HSIA, Defendant.
CourtU.S. Court of Appeals — District of Columbia Circuit

Nancy Luque, Reed Smith Shaw & McClay, Washington, DC, for Defendant.


PAUL L. FRIEDMAN, District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on the defendant Maria Hsia's Motion for Reconsideration of Certain Pretrial Motions previously denied by this Court, specifically her (1) Motion to Dismiss the Indictment for Violation of Due Process (Pretrial Motion No. 1); (2) Motion to Dismiss Counts in the Indictment for Their Positive Repugnance to the Federal Election Campaign Act (Pretrial Motion No. 2); (3) Motion to Dismiss Count 1 of the Indictment for Failure to State an Offense Under 18 U.S.C. § 371 (Pretrial Motion No. 3: Conspiracy to Defraud); (4) Motion to Dismiss Indictment Because It Offends the First Amendment (Pretrial Motion No. 9); and (5) Motion to Dismiss Indictment Because It Selectively Prosecutes Maria Hsia (Pretrial Motion No. 10). Ms. Hsia also has filed a separate Motion to File Ex Parte/In Camera Submission in Connection with Media Coverage of Case and a Motion to Strike References in Count 1 to Alleged False Statements.

Upon careful consideration of the motions and supporting memoranda of law and other materials submitted by the defendant, the government's oppositions, and the defendant's reply, the Court will deny the Motion for Reconsideration and the Motion to File Ex Parte/In Camera Submission. It also will deny the Motion to Strike without prejudice to Ms. Hsia's right to renew the motion before the case goes to the jury.


Ms. Hsia has presented very little in her Motion to Reconsider that is different from what was briefed in the initial round of motions. At the time that it considered those initial motions, the Court had before it voluminous briefs filed by the parties and most of the cases now cited by Ms. Hsia. The Court is not now persuaded that its analysis was flawed in any respect.

The only somewhat new argument presented by Ms. Hsia in her Motion to Reconsider is that the conspiracy count of the indictment must be dismissed because it is permeated with and based upon the same false statements that formed the basis of Counts 2-6 which the Court has dismissed and because it is infected by the same infirmities as those counts. Ms. Hsia argues that the alleged false statements therefore can form no part of the conspiracy charge and that in the absence of these false statements the indictment does not sufficiently allege a Section 371 conspiracy. The Court disagrees.

The government's case at trial may be complicated by the fact that it cannot rely on a theory that Ms. Hsia obstructed the functions of the Federal Elections Commission by causing "false statements" to be made. Nonetheless, the indictment alleges an agreement between Ms. Hsia and the International Buddhist Progress Society to impair, obstruct, impede and defeat the lawful functions and duties of both the Federal Election Commission and the Immigration and Naturalization Service, including specifically the FEC's responsibility of "enforcing the reporting requirements of the FECA and for directing, investigating and instituting civil enforcement actions with respect to violations of the FECA, including the provisions [prohibiting corporate contributions and contributions in the name of another]" and the INS's responsibility of "administering and enforcing the requirements of the [Immigration and Nationality Act] and all other laws relating to immigration, naturalization, and nationality." Indictment at ¶¶ 6, 8, 10. The indictment alleges a number of overt acts taken in furtherance of these conspiratorial objects. Indictment at ¶ 40. The indictment therefore sufficiently sets forth the elements of a conspiracy charge and thus "sufficiently alleges a Section 371 conspiracy." See Opinion of September 10, 1998 at 37-39.

As for Ms. Hsia's argument that the Court misinterpreted or failed properly to apply the decision of the D.C. Circuit in Galliano v. U.S. Postal Service, 836 F.2d 1362 (D.C.Cir. 1988), when it declined to extend the reasoning of that case to the different circumstances presented here, the Court disagrees. If this Court's reading of Galliano is wrong or if the rationale of the Circuit's opinion should be extended to cover this situation, the court of appeals is the proper...

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6 cases
  • U.S. v. Hsia
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • May 18, 1999
    ...dismissed Counts Two through Six--causing false statements to be made to FEC. 24 F.Supp.2d 33, 38-47, 52-63 (D.D.C.1998); 24 F.Supp.2d 63, 64-65 (D.D.C.1998). The United States appeals this dismissal; we reverse. Hsia cross-appeals the refusal to dismiss Count One; we dismiss the appeal for......
  • U.S. v. Naegele
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • May 2, 2006
    ...The Court may strike statements from an indictment, however, only if they are both prejudicial and irrelevant. See United States v. Hsia, 24 F.Supp.2d 63, 65 (D.D.C. 1998) (citing United States v. Oakar, 111 F.3d 146, 157 (D.C.Cir.1997)). Relevant statements in an indictment "should not be ......
  • U.S. v. Kanchanalak
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • February 3, 1999
    .......         The Court concludes that the reasoning in its opinions in United States v. Hsia, 24 F.Supp.2d 33 (D.D.C.1998), and United States v. Trie, 23 F.Supp.2d 55 (D.D.C. 1998), compels dismissal of all of the false statements counts ......
  • United States v. Kanchanalak, Criminal No. 98-0241 (PLF) (D. D.C. 2/3/1999), Criminal No. 98-0241 (PLF).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. United States District Court (Columbia)
    • February 3, 1999
    ...2(b) could be applied consistently with the Constitution to the conduct alleged in Ms. Hsia's Indictment. See United States v. Hsia, 24 F. Supp.2d at 63. That is not to say, however, that a defendant can only "cause" a political committee to assert that he or she is the true source of a con......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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