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Spousal Testimony

During trial, the wife of the main subject, also charged as a co-conspirator, makes an offer of cooperation in return for a lighter sentence. During a meeting with you, the AUSA, the wife, and her lawyer, she states she is willing to testify against her husband. She states that among other things, her husband told her in detail about the final instructions for the distribution of funds he received from his associates. You are happy to receive this information. After the meeting, you tell the AUSA that it is a shame she cannot testify to those statements at trial because of the husband-wife privilege. The AUSA looks at you and tells you there will be no problem with having her testify as it falls under one of the exceptions to the hearsay rule. You aren't sure about her conclusion and decide to research the issue of spousal testimony. You realize that if she is able to take the stand against her husband, this trial will likely end with the return of a guilty verdict.

Apply the rules of evidence to the above situation. Maximum 200 words.

Solution Preview

AUSA is a federal prosecutor who assists the US Attorney. The AUSA operates in criminal cases.
Since the wife is a co-conspirator she can give evidence for a lighter sentence.
:See: Rule 504 Husband-wife privilege"(b) The privilege may be asserted
only by the individual holding the privilege or by the holder's guardian, conservator,
or personal representative. A communication is confidential if it is made privately
by an individual to his or her spouse and is not intended for disclosure to any other
person. (1)"

Rule 504 Husband-wife privilege can be asserted only by the individual holding the privilege. In this case the wife is holding the privilege and simply not assert her privilege. He husband cannot assert this privilege. This is not an ...

Solution Summary

Spousal Testimony is discussed in great detail in this solution.

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