NEW YORK: Government lawyers say the ongoing investigation into the Sept. 11 attacks could be compromised if the airline industry is allowed to seek more information from the FBI to defend itself against lawsuits brought by terrorism victims.
In papers filed late Tuesday, the government urged a judge to block aviation companies from interviewing five FBI employees who the companies say will help them prove the government withheld key information before the 2001 attacks.
The lawyers said it would be impossible to interview the employees without disclosing classified or privileged material that could “cause serious damage to national security and interfere with pending law enforcement proceedings.”
“The harm described is not hypothetical and cannot be lightly dismissed,” according to the court papers submitted by the office of U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia. “Investigators continue to seek out those parties responsible for the 9/11 attacks who remain at large.”