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DetNews.com – U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade has launched an internal investigation to try to determine the source of leaks of information regarding a Detroit City Hall corruption investigation, she said today.

“Investigations are kept confidential for a number of important reasons, including protecting the integrity of the investigation, protecting the safety of witnesses and protecting targets of investigation from public suspicion when no charges have been filed,” McQuade said in a prepared statement.

She said if her investigation showed any disclosures were made by a defendant in a criminal case in violation of an order to keep that information secret, her office would file a contempt of court motion. Defendants in criminal cases are routinely provided evidence — which can include information about others under investigation — to help them prepare for trial. The defendants and their attorneys are sometimes required to sign “protective orders” promising to keep the information secret.

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