Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber LLP

Supreme Court Narrows Scope Of Speedy Trial Act

March 8, 2010, Law360, New York, NY

Resolving a split among the circuits, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that extensions granted for preparing pretrial motions do not automatically delay trial start dates under the Speedy Trial Act, reversing an appeals court's denial of a criminal defendant's bid to dismiss a case against him.

The court ruled 7-2 on Monday to remand Taylor James Bloate's motion to dismiss drug and weapons convictions against him to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit on the grounds that his trial did not begin within 70 days after his indictment, grounds for a case's dismissal under the Speedy Trial Act of 1974.

Mark T. Stancil, an attorney for Bloate, called the decision "extraordinarily rewarding."