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ACLU sues Arizona over law barring talks with crime victims

( Photo)

PHOENIX — A group of defense attorneys has sued Arizona in federal court over a law barring them from speaking to crime victims unless the prosecutor’s office sets up the interview.

The lawsuit filed Monday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona and attorneys representing Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice said the law restricts lawyers’ free speech rights.

They said almost no victims or family members end up talking with defense attorneys after being counseled by

Amy Kalman of the attorneys group said the law was an unconstitutional prior restraint on speech and made it difficult for lawyers to provide effective representation to defendants.

The law dated to the 1990 Victims’ Bill of Rights approved by voters.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s office had no immediate comment on the lawsuit.

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