oppose open hearing in Nacchio trial
The government wants parts of today's hearing closed to
discuss how to handle classified info.
By Andy Vuong, Staff Writer Denver Post
Friday, August 24, 2006
A hearing scheduled today should be closed for "a very
limited portion" so the parties can discuss how to handle
classified information in the insider-trading case against
former Qwest chief executive Joseph Nacchio, the government
said Thursday in a court filing.
The filing was in response to The Denver Post's objection to
the government's request that parts of the motions hearing
be closed to the public.
"Some of the information raised by the defendant is
extremely sensitive -- disclosure of information as basic as
the name of some of the agencies involved could compromise
national security," states the filing from the U.S.
Department of Justice.
Nacchio faces 42 counts of illegal insider trading connected
to his sale of $100.8 million in Qwest stock in early 2001.
Prosecutors allege he knew that the company's finances were
faltering. Nacchio has pleaded not guilty.
Nacchio's attorneys have said they want to use classified
information to argue that Nacchio had a rosy outlook at the
time because the company was in line to receive large
Before departing Qwest in mid-2002, Nacchio served on two
federal advisory panels dealing with national-security
issues: the Network Reliability and Interoperability
Council and the National Security Telecommunications
Advisory Committee. However, he wasn't nominated to serve
on the latter panel until July 2001 -- which is after the
period when he allegedly made illegal insider trades.
The government said in Thursday's filing it "believes that
this case will ultimately be able to proceed without the
disclosure of classified information." But prosecutors
added that the parties haven't had a chance to discuss the
relevancy and admissibility with the court.
During today's hearing, U.S. District Judge Edward
Nottingham is expected to rule on Nacchio's request to move
the case from Colorado to his home state of New Jersey.
Nottingham likely will also rule on Nacchio's motion to
dismiss the charges.
A trial date has not been set.
Staff writer Andy Vuong
can be reached at 303-820-1209 or