Judge rules Reggie Brown can leave the country for vacation

The suspended councilman has a family reunion outside the U.S. in late July

By Garrett Pelican - Digital executive producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Suspended Jacksonville City Councilman Reggie Brown may have forfeited his passport after his May 2018 indictment, but he’ll be allowed to leave the country for a family trip before trial.

On Thursday, a federal judge handling Brown’s case granted a motion to temporarily lift a court order barring travel outside the U.S. so Brown could take a cruise trip and attend a family reunion next month.

In doing so, U.S. Magistrate James Klindt brushed off arguments from Assistant U.S. Attorney Tysen Duva, whose reasoning was that Brown’s time would be “better spent working” on his legal defense.

“The weeks leading up to trial should be spent diligently preparing and consulting with legal counsel regarding the case and trial strategy,” prosecutors wrote in their June 10 response to Brown’s motion.

As part of Klindt’s order, Brown will be allowed to leave the country July 26-29 for the reunion, so long as he gives the pretrial services officer the name of the cruise ship and a copy of his travel plans.

Brown is set to go on trial Aug. 15 on 34 counts detailed in a federal indictment charging him and fellow council member Katrina Brown, who is unrelated, with conspiracy and fraud. They've pleaded not guilty.

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