The Pellicano Trial: The Allison Hope Weiner Plot ThickensSun Apr 06, 2008 @ 07:58PM PST
Posted by Matthew Belloni
When we last checked in with Allison Hope Weiner, the Huffington Post's intrepid Pellicano trial blogger, defense counsel was trying to figure out how to subpoena her to testify about where she got those bombshell audiotapes of Chris Rock, Courtney Love and Matt Williams chatting candidly with the supersleuth.
Now Hope Weiner, a former lawyer and NY Times freelancer, is facing a different smackdown with indicted attorney Terry Christensen. She was served Thursday with a request for a Temporary Restraining Order seeking to enjoin her from publishing the tapes (and require her to turn them over to the court). Christensen says he's been irreparably harmed by their dissemination, and that his right to a fair trial is in jeopardy. Here's the request.
More interesting, Hope Weiner and her enablers at the HuffPost are fighting back. Arianna has ponied up for a big-time First Amendment lawyer in Ted Boutrous (he defended Time's Matt Cooper in the Valerie Plame case, among others), who filed this well-reasoned opposition on Friday.
In it, Boutrous argues that the TRO request is an "utterly transparent, and utterly unconstitutional, effort to chill speech and intimidate Ms. Hope Weiner and other journalists from reporting on the ongoing Pellicano trial and related proceedings." The NY Times already published excerpts of the tapes about a year ago, he argues, and they remain on its website, making an expedited TRO unnecessary.