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Statement Of Brian Roehrkasse, Acting Director Of Public Affairs, On The Appeals Court Ruling In The Jefferson Case


“The Department of Justice is pleased that the D.C. Circuit opinion does not find that the search of a congressional office is unconstitutional. We are disappointed with the ruling that requires that a member of Congress be provided advance notice and the right to review materials before the execution of a search warrant. Because of the procedures that were put in place for the execution of the search warrant, the indictment and prosecution of Congressman Jefferson will not be negatively impacted by this decision. The Court of Appeals notes that there is no indication the Executive Branch did not act based on a good-faith interpretation of the law, as reflected in the District Court’s prior approval. The Department of Justice will continue to prepare for trial, scheduled for January 2008, and we are pleased that the D.C. Circuit opinion allows the prosecutors to retain non-Speech or Debate clause documents. The Department will review the decision and evaluate further action.”


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