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5th Amendment Rights is it Always a Valid Excuse?

Updated: Oct 26, 2022

At the Freedom Voice Reports, our investigative journalism, deals with different topics to preserve our Freedoms. Today we will deal with the rights of the individual inside the court within our justice department.

Former congressman David Rivera, accused by PDV USA of breaching a contract that for $50 million dollars granted by the regime of Nicolás Maduro to lobby for Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) in Washington DC in 2017. He never provided any services.

A New York court ordered Esther Nuhfer, owner of Communicatios Solutions, to deliver the evidence requested in the trial against Interamerican Consulting Inc., the company owned by the former congressman.

Judge Lauren Fleischer Louis of the Southern District Court of Florida granted PDV USA the motion it filed to compel Esther Nuhfer to produce the documentation in following the laws of discovery , while rejecting most of her objections. In this regard, she was given a period of 14 days for the documents to be delivered, establishing that the production of the papers would be continuous and the product of the agreement of the parties, which should meet to review and proceed accordingly.

There is an ongoing criminal investigation against David Rivera. Documents were turned over to the government. The judge's order specifies that the delivery should begin with those documents that have already been identified and delivered in turn to the government, because the requests of both the prosecution and the plaintiff coincide.

The court also ordered that PDV USA's demands on Esther Nuhfer be limited given her status as a third party and not as a defendant, granting her the possibility of presenting objections as the papers are produced.

The magistrate also overturned the claim of Nuhfer and his company to avail themselves of the privilege of the Fifth Amendment, determining that it does not apply in this case.

Similarly, Sulivan challenged Esther Nuhfer's belief that the Fifth Amendment gives her license to refuse to produce documents in response to PDV USA's requests, first because Communication Solutions is a corporation over which have presented evidence that it is an exclusive property.

A corporation does not have a valid Fifth Amendment defense,” she asserted, then added, “Nuhfer, as the custodian of the records here, cannot invoke the Fifth Amendment even if the act of production incriminates the custodian of the records.”

Sulivan asserted that the Fifth Amendment does not apply to Nuhfer personally either, since the fact that she is the holder of the requested documents does not incriminate her, since that is public knowledge. PDV USA's lawyer told the court that the documents that Nuhfer refuses to deliver to the plaintiff are the same ones that she has already delivered to the government.

He ordered the parties to review the documents that have already been presented to the prosecution and, from there, establish if the production of others is necessary.

What the judge did warn was that in the discovery hearings, the presentation of documents is required to be done within the 14 days imposed by the rule.

It made it clear that since it is a third party in the case, PDV USA must be very specific when establishing what type of documents it is looking for, so as not to force Nuhfer to carry out a search that is not proportional to its status as a third party. in this cause.

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