Ted Stevens Prosecution Report Filed With Washington Court
By Tom Schoenberg – Mar 15, 2012 8:58 AM ET
A report detailing allegedly pervasive misconduct in the failed corruption case against the late Alaska Senator Ted Stevens was filed in federal court after some prosecutors fought to keep it under seal.
“The investigation and prosecution of U.S. Senator Ted Stevens were permeated by the systematic concealment of significant exculpatory evidence, which would have independently corroborated Senator Stevens’s defense and his testimony, and seriously damaged the testimony and credibility of the government’s key witness,” according to the report filed by Henry Schuelke III in federal court in Washington today.
U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan set aside the verdict against Stevens in April 2009 and ordered an investigation into whether prosecutors’ conduct, which he said was the worst he had seen in 25 years on the bench, was criminal.
In November, Sullivan said Schuelke had concluded the prosecutors’ misconduct didn’t warrant criminal contempt charges. The judge, who oversaw the trial and appointed Schuelke, ordered prosecutors and lawyers for Stevens and other witnesses to argue whether the report should be made public.
Four of the Stevens prosecutors objected to releasing the report, claiming that Schuelke’s investigation should be treated like a grand jury probe, which is nonpublic and bound by secrecy rules.
The Justice Department abandoned the case against Stevens after Attorney General Eric Holder discovered the prosecutors withheld evidence that would have helped Stevens contest charges he omitted $250,000 worth of gifts on his financial disclosure reports.
Stevens, a Republican who served 40 years in the Senate, lost a re-election campaign in 2008. He died in a plane crash in 2010 at age 86.
The case is In re Special Proceedings, 09-00198, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).
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