Judge Refuses to Dismiss Stevens Case

Posted October 8, 2008 at 4:04pm

Federal Judge Emmet Sullivan refused again on Wednesday to dismiss the criminal charges against Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) but agreed to strike from the trial record some government evidence that he concluded was tainted by the prosecutors’ actions.

For the third time, Sullivan rejected the defense’s motion to dismiss the case over allegations that prosecutors had failed to timely turn over to Stevens’ attorneys evidence that could have been helpful in defending him.

Prosecutors have alleged that Stevens accepted more than $250,000 worth of home renovations and other gifts, mostly from his friend and former oil company executive Bill Allen, and never reported those gifts on his Congressional financial disclosure forms as required by law.

Stevens’ attorneys have repeatedly accused the Justice Department of failing to turn over evidence that would have been useful in their case. For example, on Tuesday prosecutors asked Allen to establish the price of a Land Rover that he purchased and ultimately gave to Stevens in a trade by showing Allen a copy of the check he used to purchase the vehicle. But the defense pointed out Wednesday that they had never seen that check before prosecutors displayed it at the trial, and the prosecution admitted that they had failed to hand it over.