243
Preparation
for Trial
Several things have to be done to prepare the nancial investigation for pre-
sentation in court. As in any project, the better the planning and prepara-
tion, the greater the likelihood of success. ere are several stages involved
in preparing the case for trial, and it may take weeks or even months to com-
plete the necessary preparation. During this time the investigator and the
prosecutor must work together to plan the best way to provide a clear and
convincing courtroom presentation.
Packaging the Evidence
Aer completing the report, the rst priority in preparing for trial is to
ensure that all of the evidence referenced in the report is packaged in a way
that is easily accessible for review and presentation. A nancial investigation
can involve hundreds of witnesses and thousands of documents. Organizing
the evidence in advance of trial is crucial to maintaining the ow of infor-
mation during the prosecutions presentation, to being ready for redirect
examination, and to responding to defense witnesses on cross-examination.
Investigators need to develop a method they are comfortable with and that
allows them to retrieve any item of evidence quickly when it is needed.
One of the easiest ways to organize the evidence is to create a separate
le for each witness. Inside the le would be memoranda of the witness’
statements, and the documents and evidence that the witness will introduce
in trial. It is also benecial to have a background sheet on the witness with
contact information, his or her relationship to the subject (if pertinent), the
documents and exhibits that the witness will introduce, and any relevant
information as to competency of that witness. Witnesses can be numbered in
the order they appear in the investigative report. is will allow the prosecu-
tion to follow the steps that the investigator took in building the case against
the subject. Similarly, the exhibits that the witness will introduce should
follow the order presented in the report. e witness will introduce all of the
documents he or she is responsible for, even if these are to be testied to by
subsequent witnesses.
Once the witness and exhibit folders are prepared, they should be pack-
aged together as a single collection. is can be accomplished by using cartons
19

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