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Redacted Nacchio transcripts to be unsealed
By Andy Vuong, Staff Writer
Wednesday, Sept 19, 2007

Denver Post

The government will submit redacted transcripts of closed-door hearings in former Qwest chief executive Joe Nacchio's insider trading case to a federal court by Oct. 3, according to court filing today.

The filing came in response to a request by The Denver Post to unseal transcripts of hearings, which were held to discuss classified information related to an aspect of Nacchio's defense.

"The agencies responsible for the classified information at issue in the proceedings ... are reviewing the transcripts," federal prosecutor Cliff Stricklin wrote in the filing.

After redacting portions of the transcripts that they deem classified, the agencies will provide copies to the court by Oct. 3.  U.S. District Judge Edward Nottingham hasn't indicated when he will make the transcripts available to the public.

Nacchio, convicted of illegal insider trading in April, said in a filing today that he does not oppose or support the motion to unseal the transcripts.

Nacchio "takes no position with regard to the request ... to make publicly available transcripts of the (closed-door) hearings that were conducted in this matter, with classified information redacted," defense attorney Herb Stern wrote in the filing.

Nacchio contended in court filings that he was upbeat about Qwest because he had classified information that led him to believe the company would receive lucrative government contracts.

Prosecutors alleged that he sold $100 million in Qwest stock in early 2001 while he had inside information that the company was headed for the falls. Nacchio served as Qwest's CEO from 1997 to June 2002.

Much of the classified defense went unheard during the trial, and Nacchio's attorneys have contended that their hands were tied because of rulings Nottingham made in regard to what information could be presented.

Nacchio was sentenced to six years in prison in July but is free on $2 million bail pending his appeal.  Oral arguments in the appeal are set for mid-December.

Staff writer Andy Vuong can be reached at 303-954-1209 or