Court won't hear appeal in witness tampering case

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Associated Press

Posted on November 13, 2012 at 10:06 AM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 13 at 10:32 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court won't review a decision to throw out sanctions and a $600,000 award against Miami prosecutors in a witness-tampering investigation where members of the defense team had allegedly been secretly recorded.

The high court on Tuesday refused to hear an appeal from Dr. Ali Shaygan, who has been acquitted of 141 counts of illegally prescribing painkillers. A federal judge said publicly that three prosecutors and a Drug Enforcement Administration agent acted "vexatiously and in bad faith" for failing to obtain permission before authorizing two witnesses to record conversations with Shaygan's attorney and his investigator.

But a federal appeals court threw out the sanction and award, saying the judge violated the prosecutors' due process rights in 2009 when he issued a public reprimand for their alleged misconduct.

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