TortsProf Blog

Editor: Christopher J. Robinette
Southwestern Law School

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

AP & Bloomberg on the Zyprexa Documents

Bloomberg has a story on Judge Weinstein's order.  The new stuff is here:

New York Times spokeswoman Diane McNulty noted that Berenson and the newspaper declined Weinstein's invitation to come to court to explain how they obtained the documents.

``Unfortunately, that resulted in an opinion which vastly overstates Alex's role in the release of the documents,'' McNulty said. ``We continue to believe that the articles we published were newsworthy and accurate and we stand by our reporting.''

Lucy Dalglish, executive director of Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, called the judge's order ``troubling.''

``Any time you have a federal judge finding that a reporter participated in a conspiracy, that's a frightening notion,'' she said. ``This is an area where I don't think the law is crystal clear.''

* * *

Dalglish added that, while Weinstein didn't issue any sanctions against Berenson, ``it's not often that you have a federal judge on the record finding that a reporter engaged in a conspiracy.''

The story adds that Mr. Gottstein is contemplating an appeal and that Berenson is on a leave to write a book.

Meanwhile, the AP story has the plainly inaccurate title, "Court Halts Spread of Lilly Documents," when of course the documents remain easily findable and will stay so; Judge Weinstein made no real effort to prevent their further distribution, so long as the distribution is done by someone other than those to whom they were originally leaked.  It also adds this:

Egilman's attorney, Edward Hayes, said: The judge has "told us not to do certain things, and our response is, 'We're sorry, and we'll never do it again.'"

In a statement, Gottstein insisted that his only concern was "patient safety" and that he never meant to defy the court.

"This was not a conspiracy to harm Eli Lilly," he said.

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