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Judge unleashes on Bill Barr’s prosecutors who strategized how to ‘bury’ documents in trial

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Judge's gavel (Shutterstock)

A group of former federal prosecutors and Republican leaders are calling out Attorney General Bill Barr for the politicization of the Justice Department, but on Wednesday a furious judge unleashed on government lawyers too.

Politico reported that U.S. District Court Judge Allison Nathan blasted government lawyers for their “handling of evidence in a criminal case involving alleged violations of sanctions against Iran.”

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Nathan said that prosecutors failed to turn over key pieces of evidence to the defense until the middle of the trial, which is against the rules for trials. Government attorneys were caught discussing a plan to “bury” the undisclosed letter.

“No responsible Government lawyer should strategize how to ‘bury’ a document that was not, but should have been, previously disclosed to the defense. A responsible Government lawyer should—at a minimum—forthrightly and truthfully reveal late disclosures to the defense,” Nathan wrote in the decision.

Her statement conflicts with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, which said that nothing happened that was “condemned.”

“The Court finds that the Government’s representation was misleading, as it implied that it had explicitly informed the defense that [the exhibit] was being disclosed for the first time. Indeed, the Court was misled,” the judge continued.

“It is the fervent hope of the Court that no sanctions are necessary. But it is the firm view of the Court that if Government lawyers acted in bad faith by knowingly withholding exculpatory material from the defense or intentionally made a misleading statement to the Court, then some sanction or referral to the Grievance Committee of the Southern District of New York would be appropriate,” she added.

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“The Court cannot yet firmly conclude based on the existing factual record whether any of the Government lawyers deliberately withheld exculpatory information,” she also said.

The former prosecutors said that Barr seems to be trying to give President Donald Trump more control over “politically sensitive investigations,” the report said.

Read the full piece here.

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Election gift for Florida? Trump poised to approve drug imports from Canada

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Over the objections of drugmakers, the Trump administration is expected within weeks to finalize its plan that would allow states to import some prescription medicines from Canada.

Six states — Colorado, Florida, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Vermont — have passed laws allowing them to seek federal approval to buy drugs from Canada to give their residents access to lower-cost medicines.

But industry observers say the drug importation proposal under review by the administration is squarely aimed at Florida — the most populous swing state in the November election. Trump's support of the idea initially came at the urging of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a close Republican ally.

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‘Highly unusual’: Bill Barr’s Russiagate prosecutor expands probe to include Clinton Foundation

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John Durham, the U.S. attorney appointed by Attorney General Bill Barr to investigate the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election, has reportedly expanded the scope of his investigation to look into past allegations of wrongdoing by the Clinton Foundation.

The New York Times reports that Durham "has sought documents and interviews about how federal law enforcement officials handled an investigation around the same time into allegations of political corruption at the Clinton Foundation."

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Cops violated Breonna Taylor’s civil rights before they even knocked down her door: Legal expert

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A legal expert explained that Breonna Taylor's civil rights were violated before Louisville police showed up at her apartment to serve a search warrant.

Civil rights attorney Maya Wiley told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" the system that let police off the hook in Taylor's killing was inherently rigged against people of color, because it shields officers from accountability when they make mistakes.

"Remember [this] started as a no-knock warrant, and because she had no criminal record, because there were real questions here, they actually changed it to a knock-and-announce [warrant], that tells you something," Wiley said. "It also tells us we need to know more because, as I said, there were indications the Postal Service inspector said they didn't think there were suspicious packages, so there is a need to understand more."

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