RealNews

U.S. Attorney Defends Detention of Material Witness for 9/11 Proceeding

Southern District U.S. Attorney James B. Comey on Thursday defended the arrest of material witnesses for grand jury proceedings, and said a judge was wrong to dismiss perjury charges against a witness who denied knowing Sept. 11 hijackers. Arguing his first appeal before the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals since becoming U.S. Attorney, Comey also gave a spirited defense of an FBI agent who was criticized by Judge Shira Scheindlin of the Southern District of New York when she ruled in favor of San Diego college student Osama Awadallah last April. Comey told the three-judge panel Judge Scheindlin erred in finding that the material witness statute — which allows a witness critical to a criminal proceeding to be detained until the witness’s testimony can be secured by deposition — does not apply to grand jury proceedings. Full Story

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