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5,000 Secret Court Files Across U.S., AP Reports

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  1. Freedom of Information
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The records and proceedings in nearly 5,000 federal court cases across the country – and one in five of the criminal cases in the U.S. District Court in Washington D.C. – are being kept secret. Separate studies by the Associated Press and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press uncovered evidence of the hidden cases. In each, the cases are not recorded in official dockets when filed and in many cases continue through trial and sentencing with there being no record. At least two federal appellate courts have ruled that such secret docketing is unconstitutional. (3/6/06)