DOJ argues against giving Stone unredacted Mueller report for trial preparation

Department of Justice attorneys on Tuesday argued against providing longtime GOP operative Roger Stone with an unredacted version of the Mueller report that he says would be used in preparation for his upcoming trial.

Federal prosecutor Jonathan Kravis argued in court that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, which has taken over Stone’s case from special counsel Robert Mueller, has made available the underlying evidence about the credibility of witnesses used to build its case.

He told Judge Amy Berman Jackson, an Obama appointee, that the redacted portions of the report should not be part of the discovery process for Stone’s trial because they “relate to the mental impressions and conclusions of government attorneys.”

Jackson questioned why the redacted statements shouldn’t be given to Stone — or least given to her privately to review — if those hidden portions of the report are similar to the ones that are already public.

Kravis replied that the government would be willing to give the redacted parts to Jackson to let her reach her own conclusion on the matter.

But he said that short of a court order, the attorney’s office did not plan on handing over the redacted parts to Stone’s legal team.

Stone’s lawyers had argued in court filings earlier this month that seeing the full report is “essential” to their case.

Jackson opened Tuesday’s hearing by asking whether the motion requesting the entire report was no longer necessary since the redacted version of the document is now public.

Stone’s attorney, Bruce Rogow, said the request is still necessary “because of the redacted portions, which are pertinent to us.”

Jackson said she would not make a ruling on the report until after she reviews the government’s response to Stone’s request, which is scheduled to be filed on Friday.

Stone, appearing in a customary double-breasted suit and round glasses, made no remarks during the brief hearing.

The GOP operative was indicted this year for allegedly making false statements to congressional investigators about his contacts surrounding WikiLeaks. He was also charged with witness tampering and impeding a congressional investigation.

Stone has pleaded not guilty to all charges. His trial is set for November.

Democrats have also been seeking the release of the full Mueller report, after the redacted version was made public earlier this month.

Attorney General William Barr, who oversaw the report’s release and the conclusion of Mueller’s 22-month probe, is set to testify this week before Congress to discuss the report.

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