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Former PSU president seeks delay in defamation suit against Louis Freeh

By: WJAC Web Staff

BELLEFONTE, Pa. -- A Centre County judge will now decide if former Pennsylvania State University President Graham Spaniers defamation lawsuit against former FBI Director Louis Freeh can be delayed.

Attorneys for Spanier and Freeh presented their cases before Centre County Judge Jonathan Grine for about an hour Tuesday morning at the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte.

Spaniers attorney, Elizabeth Ainslie, argued that her clients civil lawsuit against Freeh should be put on hold until after the criminal case against him is resolved. Spanier was present at the hearing.

Ainslie said the delay should be granted because the majority of those testifying in the civil case would likely be testifying in the criminal case. She said if the civil case proceeds before the criminal case, some people may not testify.

Spanier is facing child endangerment, perjury and other charges regarding the alleged cover up of sexual abuse of boys at the hands of former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky.

Those charges were filed in Dauphin County, where Spanier appeared before a grand jury during the Pennsylvania Attorney Generals investigation into allegations of sex abuse against Sandusky.

Spanier is suing Freeh over the report he and his staff authored regarding their internal investigation of the Sandusky case at Penn State.

The report, commissioned by Penn State, implicated Spanier, former PSU Vice President Gary Schultz, and former Athletic Director Timothy Curley, in the cover-up, stating the three hid abuse allegations against Sandusky.

Freehs attorney, Robert Heim, argued that the defamation accusations made by Spanier are too broad and that he hasnt been presented with any evidence specifically outlining defamation. Freeh was not present at the hearing.

Grine did not say when he would issue his ruling in the case.

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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times