Stevens' prosecutors lose contempt of court appeal

Associated PressDecember 9, 2011 

WASHINGTON -- A contempt of court citation against the prosecutors who tried the late Sen. Ted Stevens has been upheld on appeal.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan found the prosecutors in contempt in February 2009 after they failed to turn documents over to Stevens' attorneys. The judge lifted the citation without imposing penalties after they eventually complied with his order.

Brenda Morris and William Welch were two of the Justice Department attorneys cited. They appealed, saying the contempt finding was procedurally improper. The U.S. Court of Appeals disagreed Friday in a ruling upholding the citation.

Stevens' 2008 conviction on corruption charges was overturned because of the prosecutors' mishandling of the case. But the senator lost his re-election bid in Alaska and died last year in a plane crash.

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