United States District Court, D. Utah
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER DENYING MOTION TO QUASH
N. PARRISH, UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT JUDGE
the Court is Alexander E. Ramos's and Adam G.
Bridge's Motion to Quash Subpoenas (ECF No. 122), filed
on October 24, 2017. The Government, after seeking an
extension, responded on November 17, 2017. Messrs. Ramos and
Bridge have not filed a reply, and the time for doing so has
passed. For the reasons set forth below, the Court DENIES the
motion. Messrs. Ramos and Bridge are ORDERED to appear at an
evidentiary hearing on December 12, 2017, in Courtroom 8.200
at 2:00 p.m.
a criminal case. Alexander E. Ramos and Adam G. Bridge served
as Defendant Toheed Ahmed's counsel. Mr. Ahmed, while
represented by Messrs. Ramos and Bridge, pleaded guilty to
possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Shortly
after doing so, Mr. Ahmed moved to withdraw his guilty plea.
Messrs. Ramos and Bridge withdrew as counsel, and the Court
appointed new counsel. Mr. Ahmed, in support of the motion to
withdraw the guilty plea, testified that former counsel
failed to adequately inform him as to the terms of the plea
agreement. The Government has served subpoenas on Messrs.
Ramos and Bridge and seeks to elicit testimony from them to
contradict Mr. Ahmed's testimony. Messrs. Ramos and
Bridge have moved to quash the Government's subpoenas,
claiming that their communications with Mr. Ahmed and their
opinions concerning those communications are privileged and
protected by the work-product doctrine. The Court disagrees.
Toheed Ahmed was indicted on January 13, 2016, for possession
with intent to distribute methamphetamine (“Count
I”) and possession with intent to distribute cocaine
(“Count II”). Count I carried a maximum sentence
of life with a minimum mandatory term of ten years
imprisonment, and Count II carried a maximum term of twenty
arraignment, Mr. Ahmed requested counsel, and the Court
appointed Ms. Audrey James, an assistant federal public
defender. Mr. Ahmed's trial was continued, and Alexander
E. Ramos, another assistant federal public defender, entered
an appearance on July 7, 2016. Mr. Ramos entered a
substitution of counsel on August 3, 2016, replacing Ms.
James. Adam G. Bridge, another federal public defender, filed
an appearance of counsel on October 26, 2016.
James, as Mr. Ahmed's counsel, had filed a motion to
suppress on July 7, 2016. The motion was amended twice, and
the Court held an evidentiary hearing on the second amended
motion to suppress on November 21, 2016. On March 23, 2017,
the Court denied the motion. On April 6, 2017, Mr. Ahmed
appeared before Magistrate Judge Dustin B. Pead and orally
moved to appoint new counsel. The Court denied the motion,
and trial was continued until May 30, 2017.
10, 2017, Mr. Ahmed appeared before Judge Pead and pleaded
guilty to Count I of the indictment, possession with intent
to distribute methamphetamine. Mr. Ramos represented Mr.
Ahmed at the hearing. The Statement in Advance of Plea
provides: (1) the parties, pursuant to Federal Rule of
Criminal Procedure 11(c)(1)(C), stipulate to a sentence of
120 months followed by five years of supervised release; (2)
the federal sentence runs concurrent with any additional
state sentence yet to be imposed by the Utah State Parole
Board; (3) Mr. Ahmed preserved his right to appeal this
Court's denial of his motion to suppress; and (4) the
Government would move to dismiss Count II at the time of
sentencing. Mr. Ahmed also agreed to waive his right to
appeal the sentencing and to forfeit $7, 852.00 in cash and a
2007 Infiniti vehicle.
Ahmed, through Mr. Ramos, filed a motion to withdraw his
guilty plea on June 26, 2017, and a supporting memorandum on
July 7, 2017. Mr. Ahmed filed a motion for a status
conference on August 3, 2017, and the next day at the
conference, the Court appointed him new counsel, Julie
September 13, 2017, the Court held an evidentiary hearing on
the motion to withdraw the guilty plea. Ms. George
represented Mr. Ahmed at the hearing, the Government was
represented by Cy Castle, and Messrs. Ramos and Bridge were
represented by Lynn Clark Donaldson, another federal public
hearing, Mr. Ahmed testified on direct examination and was
cross examined by Mr. Castle. During direct examination, Mr.
Ahmed testified as to conversations he had with Mr. Ramos
concerning the terms of the plea agreement. Mr. Ahmed stated
that Mr. Ramos failed to adequately inform him as to the
terms of the plea agreement:
Q: Did you have an opportunity to listen to your defense
counsel reading [the plea agreement] to you?
A: Yes. He only read the relevant conduct to me. He said it
was the most important part of the plea agreement, and the