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Senate Questions To Judge Nathan Touch Covid But Not Call-In Lines, Nothing on Maxwell Trial

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - ESPN

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Dec 15 – The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on December 15 on a number of nominees for District Court seats, and on Alison J. Nathan who while presiding of the U.S. v. Ghislaine Maxwell sex trafficking trial has been nominated for the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.  

  During jury selection in the Maxwell trial, one prospective juror said they could not sit for two days between Christmas and New Years Day as their spouse had bought non-refundable tickets for a trip.

  The juror was asked to change the plans and when they didn't, they were dropped from the jury. 

 Notably, after the ten days of the government's case, the Maxwell trial took a three day hiatus.

  The reason was not publicly explained, in keeping with the redaction in the case of the flight logs of Jeffrey Epstein's planes, the withholding of Maxwell's witness list, and the curtailing of the public call-in line that other Districts and even some SDNY judges maintain. 

  (In full disclosure, Inner City Press has written three times to Judge Nathan on these topics. The first two letters were docketed and denied, here. The third, citing the Omicron variant of COVID and the ban on travel from African countries that Epstein's plane flew to, with former President Clinton and Kevin Spacey, has yet to be acted on or even docketed.)   

  At the December 15 Senate Judiciary hearing, none of these topics came up. Most Democratic Senators offered only praise. (Senator Mazie Hirono, to her credit, asking her standard question about unwanted sexual advances.)

  Two Republican Senators asked about Judge Nathan shaving a year off the sentence of William Tucker in 13-cr-378 and questioned it, since he already had COVID and was vaccinated.  

 One of Judge Nathan's boldest decisions, to at least initially grill the prosecutors for Brady violations in US v. Nejad, did not come up in the Committee, nor in some recent profiles. Judge Nathan for her part shouted by, by name, her SDNY courtroom deputy Khalilah Williams.

                        Nathan in DC / ICP

  In DC on December 15 there were questions about the Second Amendment and the place of international law, citing Nathan having noted the presence in the Supreme Court gallery of a delegation from China when the application of the death penalty was limited.  

 But nothing about the Maxwell case and its implications; nothing about court transparency either. Video of hearing here, from 1:00 to 1:48.

To some it seemed strange (some might note that since big wigs of both parties are implicated in l'affaire Epstein and Maxwell, neither side wants to touch it).

To others, it was a missed opportunity. We'll see - watch this site. 


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