Mike Cruz, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/02/2010 06:06:16 PM PST

SAN BERNARDINO – A hearing on child pornography charges for a former spokesman of the local Democratic Central Committee was stopped and then tossed out Tuesday when the defense learned it had not received an 1,100-page report from prosecutors.

A sheriff’s detective was testifying when the defense lawyer for Sam Clauder discovered he had not been given a copy of a report the detective was using at Clauder’s preliminary hearing in San Bernardino Superior Court.

The defense says the report will shed light on days and times when pornographic images were accessed under Clauder’s profile on a computer at his Crestline home.

“That would be like flying in the dark without that,” defense lawyer Rajan Maline said after the proceedings. Clauder, 58, returns to court Feb. 4 to set a new preliminary hearing date.

Because of the missing discovery, the court offered Maline two options: continue the hearing at another date or vacate Tuesday’s proceedings and completely start anew some other time.

Rajan Maline chose the latter.

“This is not a dismissal,” said Judge Brian McCarville of the hearing’s conclusion. “It’s like nothing ever happened.”

McCarville ordered a copy of the report, which contains copies of the images, to be given to the defense with restrictions. Prosecutor Maryanne Choi could not be reached later for comment.

Testimony from Sheriff’s Detective Brian Swan revealed that nude images of underage girls were found on the computer.

A former spokesman and finance chairman for the San Bernardino County Democratic Central Committee, Clauder has denied the charges. He was not living at a Crestline home when the pornography was found, and he believes he is being framed, he has said in earlier interviews.

To read entire story, click here.