LAWYERS say they want details of expenses kept private

Tuesday, July 31st 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

DENVER (AP) _ Three lawyers who spent time representing Timothy McVeigh on Monday told a Denver federal court they have no objection to the release of expense summaries for their work in the case.

However, they said they do not want to have detailed billing statements and supporting materials for those statements released.

U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch, who presided over McVeigh's trial in Denver, already has released documents showing the defense for the convicted and executed Oklahoma City bomber cost more than $13.9 million of public funds.

However, many details have not been released.

The lawyers' responses on Monday came from Christopher L. Tritico, Jeralyn E. Merritt and Stephen Jones, who was the lead defense lawyer during McVeigh's trial.

McVeigh, 33, was executed on June 11 in Terre Haute, Ind., for the 1995 bombing that killed 168 and injured hundreds more.

Matsch also earlier indicated billing statements and other details would remain sealed to protect attorney-client privilege and the lawyers' work-produce privilege.

``Although Mr. McVeigh is deceased, his communications with his attorney, investigators, and other legal support staff remain privileged,'' wrote Tritico.

He also noted that because of the nature of the case, ``individuals who were investigated by the defense, associated with the defense, or otherwise identified in defense billing statements might be subjected to harassment or violence should their names be made public.''

Thirdly, he noted, credit card account numbers would be on those documents, and release of that information ``would advance no public interest and could work extreme hardship to counsel.''