Defense lawyers and news media organizations are objecting to a government effort to bar the public from the trial of two pro-Israel lobbyists charged with violating U.S. espionage laws, reports the Washington Post. Media organizations, including the Post, criticized “the government’s apparent request to close” the trial of Steven J. Rosen and Keith Weissman. Defense lawyers filed a motion seeking “to strike the government’s request to close the trial.” The contents of that motion are sealed, and prosecutors declined to comment.
Rosen and Weissman are former employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. They are charged with a conspiracy to obtain classified information and to pass it to the media and the Israeli government. Their trial is scheduled for June 4. Lucy Dalglish of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, said, “We’re concerned that this case is going to be much more secret than necessary.”