George Zimmerman Was Busted by Recorded Phone Calls

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An Orlando judge revoked George Zimmerman's bond yesterday and ordered him to return to jail. Prosecutors alleged Zimmerman, along with his wife Shelley, misled the court over their financial situation during a bond hearing. ThinkProgress obtained the prosecutors' motion that shows exactly how the Zimmermans deceived the court, and how their phone conversations while he was in jail busted them.

The motion shows that Shelley Zimmerman testified on April 20 that she didn't know how much money was raised through Zimmerman's paypal donations, and "to [her] knowledge" they wouldn't be able to afford a bond payment. In transcripts from recorded conversations that took place while George was still in jail a week before, George instructs Shelley to go to the bank and take control of his account. In another call, Shelley is at the bank and the teller takes the phone to get a security code from George so he could authorize Shelley's control of the account. Shelley even says at one point, "Not going to say any personal information since it's recorded." It does appear that the Zimmermans did speak in some kind of "code," like the prosectors said yesterday. Bank statements show the family had access to $135,000 in cash on the day before the bond hearing, but their conversations never speak in denominations over $100. 

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In regards to Zimmerman's passport mix up, the motion uses state department records to prove the existence of a second passport. Records show Zimmerman applied for a second passport in 2004 because the passport he surrendered to the judge "was lost or stolen." Zimmerman was granted a new passport that wouldn't expire until 2014. In a recorded phone call from a few days before the April 20 bond hearing, George and Shelley talked about the passport: 

Defendant: Do you know what? I think my passport is in that bag.

Shelley Zimmerman: I have one for you in a safety deposit box...

Defendant: OK, you hold on to that. 

Shelley Zimmerman: For you...

It's going to be pretty difficult for Zimmerman's attorney to argue he's not a flight risk now. Zimmerman has yet to turn himself in, and has an active passport. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.