Appeals court says Ted Stevens report can be released

McClatchy NewspapersMarch 14, 2012 

WASHINGTON _ The U.S. Court of Appeals on Wednesday denied an attempt to stop Thursday’s release of an investigative report detailing prosecutorial misconduct in the case against former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens.

The ruling by the Washington D.C. appellate court denied a request by Edward Sullivan, one of the members of the Stevens prosecution team, to delay the release while he appeals a judge’s order that the report be made public.

The appeals court ruling offered no explanation of the decision to deny Sullivan’s request, other than that he did not satisfy the “stringent requirements” needed to justify an emergency delay of a judge’s order.

The ruling clears the way for Thursday’s release of a 500-page report into the conduct of the Justice Department attorneys who were involved in the botched prosecution of the longtime senator. A jury found Stevens guilty in 2008 of lying on financial disclosure forms, but the convictions were thrown out a year later when the Justice Department admitted that it failed to turn over evidence to the defense that would have helped Stevens.

Stevens lost his re-election race right after the convictions and died in a plane crash in 2010.

The report into Justice Department misconduct in the case was prepared by Harry Schuelke, a special prosecutor assigned by the judge in the Stevens case.

The Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility has its own separate report on the Stevens case, which hasn’t yet been made public.

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