The shooting occurred during a robbery at a South Philadelphia Roy Rogers restaurant.
The issue has been dumped in the lap of Common Pleas Judge Carolyn E. Temin, who is expected to rule within a few weeks. Assistant District Attorney Hugh Colihan told Temin that the case has been listed 33 times, and "not a single one of the listings has been postponed at the request of the commonwealth.
"We've been ready to try the case since June 29, 1993. Therefore, these defendants should not get a windfall."
Colihan claims the defendants and the unavailability of their prior lawyers are responsible for the delays.
The prosecutor also contends the Ginns are not entitled to bail because he is seeking capital punishment, a non-bailable offense.
"That's a frivolous argument," said Tucker Ginn's lawyer, George Newman. ''We're not moving for bail. The issue is the right to a speedy trial . . . The defendants must be released."
Newman said the Ginn brothers "have a valid claim on this particular issue. The law is clear. It's the obligation of the government to move a case to trial. And if the government is not diligent, the government can lose."
During a recent hearing before Temin, attorneys Joel S. Moldovsky and F. Michael Medway, who represented the brothers until they filed suit against them, said they would have been ready to try the case if it had been assigned to a judge.
Newman and co-counsel, Paul J. Hetznecker, both court-appointed, say even though there were many defense requests for postponements, there was a period of more than 180-days in which the case could have been tried.
Some of the delays occcurred during the period of the suit against Moldovsky and Medway, which claimed the lawyers were conspiring with the DA's office to convict the brothers of first-degree murder.
Another long delay came during the time it took to try a suit by Tucker Ginn against the city, in which he charged unsanitary prison conditions were violating his rights.