United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Lindsay, Magistrate Judge.
Alexander F. Fox filed a motion to withdraw as counsel of
record for Oskel Lezcano. Mot., DN 163. Fox indicated that
Assistant United States Attorney Joseph Ansari has no
objection to Fox's withdrawal. Id. at ¶ 1.
Criminal Rule 57.6 governs attorney withdrawal in criminal
cases. The rule prohibits an attorney from withdrawing within
twenty-one days of trial unless a compelling reason exists.
LCrR 57.6. Here, the jury trial which had been set for
October 12, 2016 has been remanded, and the jury trial will
be set at a future date. See Order, DN 154.
attorney seeks to withdraw any other time, the attorney must
file a motion and certify that the motion has been served on
the client. LCrR 57.6(b). Here, Fox has filed a motion and
certified that he “sent a copy of this Motion to
Withdraw to the Defendant” via certified mail. Mot.
the rule requires that the attorney make “a showing of
good cause.” LCrR 57.6(b).
cause for the withdrawal, Fox argues that he has had
“no contact whatsoever with his client for some
time” even though he says he was working to resolve the
matter with the government. Mot. ¶ 2. Fox also points to
a phone call he received from a probation officer here in the
Western District who informed him that a new arrest warrant
had been issued for Lezcano, that Lezcano had not reported to
the United States Probation Office, and that Lezcano was
nowhere to be found. Id. Fox argues that
Lezcano's fugitive status “makes it impossible for
Counsel to represent his interests.” Id.
¶ 3. Fox also says that his office is in Coral Gables,
Florida, a two-hour flight from Louisville. Id.
Finally, Fox says that he has tried “numerous
times” to reach Lezcano, and that he has reached out to
his family members to encourage him to turn himself in.
four of Fox's motion to withdraw says:
Counsel also respectfully requests, if required, a telephonic
hearing to avoid having to travel to Louisville. If
the Court is unwilling to grant Counsel's request for a
telephonic hearing, then Counsel would request that his
colleague Brendan [McLeod] be permitted to stand in for
Counsel as the Ex-Parte hearing.
Id. ¶ 4 (emphasis added).
another case, this request would be unremarkable. Here, in
light of Fox's conduct in this matter, it is ironic if
30, 2015, Lezcano appeared in person in Louisville for his
initial appearance and arraignment proceedings. See
Order 1, DN 35. Brendan McLeod stood in for Fox whom Lezcano
had retained as counsel. See Id. The undersigned
remanded Lezcano to the custody of the United States Marshal
Service pending a detention hearing. Id. at 2. The
undersigned set the matter for a detention hearing the
following day to determine whether Lezcano would remain in
the Marshals' custody pending trial. See id.
next morning, Lezcano appeared before the undersigned for the
detention hearing. Order, DN 38. Again, McLeod stood in for
Fox as Lezcano's retained counsel. Id. McLeod
requested on behalf of Mr. Fox a further continuance of the
detention hearing for 12 additional days to allow Fox to
argue the issue of detention. Id. Lezcano indicated
his consent to the continuance, and the United States did not
United States Probation Office had recommended Lezcano's
days later, on August 12, 2015, the undersigned held a
detention hearing. Order, DN 47. Fox appeared in person on
behalf of Lezcano. The United States moved to withdraw its
motion for detention. Id. The undersigned released
Lezcano on a $100, 000 secured bond with conditions.
Id. After setting the terms of Lezcano's
release, the undersigned noted his discomfort ...