Court filing: Tampered emails presented to grand jury in Jake’s Fireworks case

Published 12:40 am Tuesday, October 5, 2021

NEDERLAND — The defense team for the owner of Jake’s Fireworks believes the federal government presented fabricated evidence to a grand jury.

According to a motion filed by the defense team for Jake’s Fireworks and Right Price Chemicals Owner Jake Daughtry, lawyers found multiple emails between “a chemical distributor and Right Price Chemical were altered in a way to support a finding of guilt on defendant.”

Several emails had an added sentence and attachment in reference to a Safety and Data Sheet, which had statements about human consumption, the court filing says.

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The motion is to request a transcript and evidence provided to the grand jury prior to Daughtry and nine others being indicted on drug trafficking and money laundering charges.

The motion says the defense believes the defendant will have enough evidence to get the indictment dismissed.

On Aug. 29, the defense team received a report from Cyopsis, which is a digital forensic company.

The report showed emails between Right Price Chemicals and Silver Fern Chemical showed discrepancies.

According to testimony, RPC purchased the chemical 1,4 butanediol (BDO) from Silver Fern. The chemical is made to be an industrial cleaner and is legal to sell as such.

The federal government alleges RPC knowingly bought and sold BDO for human consumption.

During a detention hearing last summer, prosecutors for the U.S. Attorney’s Office said companies that sell BDO require purchasers to fill out a form asking them to name their business and the chemical’s intended use.

Daughtry’s attorney, Dustin Galmor, showed the court the chemical was available to buy online from Walmart and Amazon.

Five days after the Daughtry’s defense team filed the motion, the U.S. Attorney’s Office assigned Christopher Rapp as lead prosecutor on the case. Michelle Englade previously held the position.

The prosecution requested an extension to respond to the motion regarding the grand jury testimony.

On the civil side, all defendants were granted an injunction allowing Right Price Chemicals and Jake’s Fireworks to reopen under the condition that the defendants do not sell BDO to anyone in any amount.

The trial date was pushed to early next year after the defense filed an unopposed motion for an extension late last month.

The motion was requested after the government handed over 5 terabytes of data to the defense. The amount of data equaled nearly one-third of the entire library of congress. The defense said they had combed through less than 5 percent of the evidence after 90 hours of examination.