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In re: Grand Jury Investigation [Rowland]

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
399 F.3d 527 (2d Cir. 2005)


Facts

A federal grand jury investigating possible criminal wrongdoing by Connecticut public officials subpoenaed Anne C. George, the former chief legal counsel to the Office of the Governor. The investigation concerned whether the governor and other public officials had accepted gifts from individuals in return for the grant of certain state contracts. When Goerge appeared before the grand jury, she testified that she had had numerous conversations with the governor and other officials on the acceptance of gifts and related ethics laws. She refused to testify as to the content of these conversations because they were protected by the attorney-client privilege. The district court then entered an order compelling George to testify, on the ground that the governmental attorney-client privilege was not as strong as the private attorney-client privilege, and must give way when it serves the public interest, such as during a grand jury investigation. The Office of the Governor and Rowland, as interested parties, appealed the district court’s decision.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Walker, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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