Grand Jury Secrecy: Discretionary Limits

January 6, 2012  |  New York Law Journal

On July 29, 2011, a federal district court judge ruled that transcripts of Richard M. Nixon's grand jury testimony related to the Watergate scandal--given with the expectation that it would remain secret--should be released to the public. Since the decision the Justice Department has proposed an amendment to Rule 6(e) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure in an attempt to confine a court's discretion to release secret grand jury materials. This article reviews the law of grand jury secrecy and instances in which a federal court may order the release of grand jury records.

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