EvidenceProf Blog

Editor: Colin Miller
Univ. of South Carolina School of Law

Friday, February 7, 2014

The Fifth Amendment Privilege and "Bridgegate"

For professors covering or attorneys interested in the fascinating Fifth Amendment privilege issues raised in United States v. Hubbell, 530 U.S. 27 (2000) and lower court cases like In re Grand Jury Subpoena, 383 F.3d 905 (9th Cir.2004); U.S. v. Ponds 454, F.3d 313, 319 (D.C. Cir. 2006), etc., a contemporary example is presented in the ongoing investigations into the George Washington Bridge closing scandal involving New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.  Aides caught up in the affair have been served with document subpoenas and are exercising a Fifth Amendment privilege not to respond.  This Newsweek story does a nice job (I think) of explaining the limited yet powerful nature of the privilege in this context and, not coincidentally (in terms of my opinion of the article's merits), quotes me in its discussion . . . .

- JB


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So why not subpoena the e-mails from Google or whoever their e-mail provider is? If its the state e-mail system, that's even better. Neither of those two entities can invoke the fifth.

Posted by: Daniel | Feb 7, 2014 12:28:23 PM

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