A federal grand jury has subpoenaed a former attorney to Dennis Montgomery, the man who accused Gov. Jim Gibbons of accepting bribes, to testify in the inquiry into the governor.
The subpoena, issued in Washington on Oct. 19, orders attorney Michael Flynn to testify before the grand jury on Friday.
The grand jury was convened to look into whether Gibbons accepted cash and other bribes while serving in Congress in return for steering military contracts to a Reno-based software company, eTreppid.
The grand jury has previously requested documents from people involved in the case, but Flynn is believed to be the first person it has ordered to testify.
Flynn represented Montgomery in a copyright case against Reno businessman Warren Trepp in Nevada federal court.
The two men are disputing ownership of software that is used in military contracts worth millions of dollars.
Montgomery has accused Gibbons, who served on the House Intelligence and Armed Services committees as a congressman, of using his influence to steer millions of dollars in contracts to Trepp, a personal friend.
Montgomery has made these accusations in court filings and in the media.
Flynn declined to comment Wednesday about the subpoena.
Sources familiar with the case said the grand jury issued the subpoena after revelations surfaced questioning the credibility of software designer Montgomery.
In a Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit, Flynn has accused Montgomery of lying in previous testimony related to the eTreppid copyright case.
“Montgomery has told me so many different lies about so many things, it is virtually impossible to determine the ‘true facts,’ let alone what parts of his statements are outright false, partially false, misleading or have grains of truth,” Flynn stated in court documents.
Flynn and Montgomery are in a court battle over attorneys fees, among other issues.
Flynn withdrew as Montgomery’s attorney in July. At the time, Flynn stated he didn’t want to represent Montgomery anymore because of payment issues and Montgomery’s behavior.
In court documents, Flynn recently stated that he withdrew after he learned between April 2007 and July 2007 how much Montgomery lied to him.
“He is a perfect example of the principle that if you tell a big enough lie, people will believe you,” he stated.
Flynn does not dispute that Trepp bribed Gibbons, according to court documents. In fact, he states that Montgomery participated in the bribery and cited a previous incident where Montgomery told an NBC interviewer that he put $100,000 in a briefcase on Trepp’s orders.
Flynn, however, emphasized that his former client is a “pathological liar.”
Among other things, Flynn states that the software at the center of the eTreppid dispute is junk.
That software is reportedly used in the government’s war on terrorism. It allows the military to search for people or objects in video images taken over battlefields from aircraft such as Predators.
Flynn also stated that Montgomery didn’t comply with a grand jury order to turn over material, such as e-mails.
In an e-mail exchange between Flynn and Montgomery dated May 30, Flynn asks Montgomery to comply with the grand jury or risk raising their suspicions.
Montgomery’s new attorney, Deborah Klar, declined to comment Wednesday.
Federal grand jury proceeding are secret and the U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday would not comment on them, said Washington-based Assistant U.S. Attorney Rich Pilger of Justice’s public integrity section.
Pilger’s name appears on the subpoena as the attorney handling the case.
Gibbons’ spokeswoman said the governor hasn’t received a subpoena to testify before the grand jury.
The grand jury also didn’t subpoena Trepp to testify, said Stephen Peek, Trepp’s attorney.
“It is my belief that the case is focused less on Warren Trepp and Governor Gibbons and more on the falsehoods and false accusations of Dennis Montgomery against my client,” he said.
Contact reporter David Kihara at email@example.com or (702) 383-4638. Review-Journal Capital Bureau writer Sean Whaley contributed to this report.