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Alleged Mid-Missouri cocaine dealer potentially exposes informants

The federal government Tuesday filed a letter of opposition in response to a request from the lawyer of an alleged Mid-Missouri cocaine dealer to allow him to keep court discovery while in jail.

Malcolm Redmon was arrested last year and charged in a major drug bust surrounding a known cocaine ring with 26 other people in November 2014.

Redmon was arrested on three cocaine-related charges last August, more than a dozen charges stemming back to drug trafficking and distribution.

U.S. prosecutors for the Western District of Missouri said they are opposed to Redmon being able to keep court records relating back to his case.

The letter says Redmon’s previous lawyer had given reports to him in direct violation of court order. Assistant United States Attorney Anthony Gonzalez said today Redmon then used those documents to identify people believed to be confidential informants, and told people outside of jail.

Authorities found out about Redmon leaking the information to outside sources, and agents were able to get a search warrant to take the reports from Redmon’s jail cell.

Western District spokesperson Don Ledford did not know Tuesday night how agents found out about Redmon’s actions, or when they searched Redmon’s cell.

Redmon’s current lawyer, David A. Kelly, filed a motion September 29 to let his client keep those documents, which include witness statements made to police. Redmon is currently in federal custody, assigned to Phelps County by the U.S. Marshal’s service. Kelly said in his motion the distance between he and Redmon makes it difficult to meet as often as Redmon would like to review his case, which is on the court’s January trial setting docket. Kelly’s office at Kelly, Symonds and Reed in Lee’s Summit is about three hours from the Phelps County Jail in Rolla.

An agreement between Redmon, his lawyer, and prosecutors from last November says if the agreement is violated, the government can withhold discovery. However, as it stands, the government continues to release and allow Redmon’s current lawyer access to materials, even though Redmon violated the agreement and “potentially endangered witnesses.”

The government’s letter states, “The Government believes that the defendant [Redmon] has sufficient access to discovery to assist in the preparation of his case, and by his prior conduct, he has shown he cannot be trusted, and that giving him access to any documentation is potentially dangerous to witnesses.”

Kelly also has a pending motion for Redmon to spend at least one hour each day at the Phelps County Jail’s Law Library. According to Kelly’s motion, Redmon only has 30 minutes a week to research his options before his trial.

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