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Judge advances Duke lacrosse lawsuit

By Associated Press
April 1, 2011

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Three former Duke lacrosse players falsely accused of rape five years ago can pursue a lawsuit against the former county prosecutor and police investigators who handled their case, a federal judge in North Carolina ruled yesterday.

US District Judge James Beaty said in his decision that the players can pursue claims such as malicious prosecution, concealment of evidence, and fabrication of false evidence.

He dismissed several other accusations, such as intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Richard Emery, a lawyer for one of the former players, Reade Seligmann, said they are prepared to pursue the case.

“The opinion is what I would call, overall, a ringing success for the boys,’’ Emery said.

A lawyer for the former district attorney, Mike Nifong, and a spokeswoman for the Durham Police Department didn’t return calls seeking comment.

Beaty criticized the size of the 162-page lawsuit. He said it forced the court to “undertake the time-consuming process of wading through a mass of legally unsupportable claims and extraneous factual allegations.’’

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