The Association of U S West Retirees



Deadline Set For Change-Of-Venue Motion In Nacchio Case
Dow Jones
Friday, July 22, 2006

DENVER (AP)--A judge set an end-of-the-month deadline Friday for Joe Nacchio to submit an expected motion seeking to move his insider trading trial from Denver, saying the former Qwest chief's attorneys have had ample time to research the issue.

U.S. District Judge Edward Nottingham gave Nacchio's attorneys until July 31 to submit the motion and prosecutors until Aug. 18 to submit a response.  A motions hearing is set Aug. 25.

"It has now been over two months since the referenced motion was filed," Nottingham wrote.  "Since defendant had anticipated a change-of-venue motion from the beginning, and has now had two more months to perfect his research, the time has come to get the issue on the table."

Nacchio's attorneys and prosecutors did not return telephone messages seeking comment.

Nacchio is charged with 42 counts of insider trading accusing him of selling $ 101 million in stock in 2001 based on inside knowledge that Qwest Communications International Inc. would be unable to meet targets because it had improperly used nonrecurring revenue to meet those goals.

Each count carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine.  Nacchio has pleaded not guilty and remains free on bail.

Nacchio's attorneys said in May they wanted to move the trial out of Denver, contending that the former chief executive officer could not receive a fair trial in Qwest's hometown.  They asked the judge for time to research the issue but did not provide a specific date for filing the motion.

Prosecutors said there was no reason for a delay because Nacchio's attorneys had said previously they planned to seek the change in location.

In addition to the criminal case, Nacchio is one of several former executives accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission of orchestrating a financial fraud that forced Qwest to restate billions of dollars in revenue.

The SEC has said fraud occurred between April 1999 and March 2002 which allowed Qwest to improperly report approximately $3 billion in revenue that helped clear the way for its 2000 acquisition of the Baby Bell, U S West.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires 07-21-061858ET Copyright (c) 2006 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.