Brief Fact Summary. Simmie Horwitz, the Defendant in a criminal tax evasion case pending before the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, filed a Motion for a Bill of Particulars, which contained thirty requests for information. Request number twenty-five sought information concerning any oral statements of the Defendant relied upon by the government to support the charge in the indictment.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. The peremptory writ of mandamus has traditionally been used in the federal courts only to confine an inferior court to a lawful exercise of its prescribed jurisdiction or to compel it to exercise its authority when it has a duty to do so. It is clear that only exceptional circumstances amounting to a judicial usurpation of power will justify the invocation of this extraordinary remedy.
Issue. Whether it was proper for the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit to issue a Writ of Mandamus to compel the United States District Judge, to vacate a portion of the pre-trial order?
Held. Neither the record nor the order of the court of appeals justifies the invocation of the extraordinary Writ of Mandamus in this case. As a result, the Writ is vacated and the cause is remanded to the court of appeals.
Where there are extraordinary circumstances, mandamus may be used to review an interlocutory order which is by no means final and thus appealable under federal statutes.View Full Point of Law