A federal judge in Washington today declined to force the government to pay legal fees Roger Clemens incurred before a mistrial was declared last summer in the perjury case against him.
Lawyers for Roger Clemens, represented by Rusty Hardin Jr. of Houston and Michael Attanasio of Cooley, last fall urged U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton to sanction the U.S. Attorney's Office for conduct that led to a mistrial.
Clemens was acquitted last month on charges that he lied to Congress in 2008 when he denied using performance enhancing drugs during his long, highly celebrated baseball career. His lawyers have declined to say how much the defense cost.
Prosecutors, including Steve Durham, a top supervisor at the U.S. Attorney's Office, told Walton he didn't have the authority to order the government to pay for fees associated with the preparation for the first trial.
Walton today didn't answer that question. The judge said in a two-page order that "because the court finds that the government's misconduct was not so severe as to warrant financial sanctions," there's no need to decide whether he has the power to force the government to pay up.
Walton said in September that he accepted Durham's statements that the government's conduct in the first trial was a mistake and not intentional. The prosecution, during the first trial, presented evidence that Walton had earlier deemed inadmissible.