NEW YORK (AP) -A Hearst Corp. lawyer asked a federal judge on Monday to schedule oral arguments in the company's attempt to make public the names of baseball players implicated in obtaining steroids.
Hearst Corp. filed court papers in June to reveal a complete copy of a December 2005 sworn statement by IRS Special Agent Jeff Novitzky used to obtain a search warrant for the home of former New York Mets clubhouse attendant Kirk Radomski. The government said former players were supplied drugs by Radomski but the names of about two dozen players were blacked out when the search warrant was unsealed in April.
Hearst, on behalf of the San Francisco Chronicle and Albany Times Union, said that since Radomski had supplied the names to baseball steroids investigator George Mitchell as part of Radomski's plea agreement with the government, the names should be made public. The government and the Major League Baseball Players Association have opposed the application.
``As no party has objected to the newspapers' request for oral argument ... we look forward to the opportunity to appear before your honor on this matter,'' Hearst lawyer Jonathan Donnellan wrote in a letter to U.S. District Judge Thomas C. Platt in Central Islip.
In July, a federal magistrate judge in Phoenix rejected a request by The Associated Press to reveal the names of players another Novitzky affidavit said were implicated in drug use by former major league pitcher Jason Grimsley. U.S. Magistrate Edward C. Voss said his ruling could change once the government probe ends.
``The continuation of the investigation makes the government's interest paramount `at this point,''' Voss wrote. ``When the investigation concludes, the weight of the government's argument against disclosure will change dramatically.''
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