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A federal judge is refusing to allow a former Virginia attorney general to testify as an expert witness in former Governor Bob McDonnell's corruption trial.
McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, are charged in a 14-count indictment with accepting more than $165,000 in gifts and loans from businessman Jonnie Williams in exchange for promoting his products. Their trial is set for July 28.
McDonnell wanted former attorney general Mark Earley to testify that conduct alleged in the indictment is not illegal. He also proposed having a defense attorney testify about the value of immunity offered by prosecutors to Williams in exchange for his testimony. U.S. District Judge James Spencer ruled that such testimony is inadmissible.
The judge also barred testimony by a former judge and some testimony by an accountant.
“I think it really smashes a lot of ideas about what the Smithsonian does and what it’s supposed to do,” one curator says of the African-American Museum’s growing collection.
As the former Virginia governor awaits his appeal on corruption charges, former attorneys general for the commonwealth have filed an amicus brief saying that the jury instructions' definition of "official acts" went far beyond court precedents.