Privacy Law

Citing Privilege Issues, Cuomo Aides Remove Some AG Documents from Archives


Reporters from the Albany Times Union noticed a curious thing when reviewing archives from the New York attorney general. Documents relating to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s time in the AG’s office were disappearing.

The New York Times and the Times Union have the answer to the mystery: Cuomo’s aides are being dispatched to remove key documents from the archives. Among the documents declared off-limits are those relating to a 2007 probe of state police being used for political purposes.

Says the Times Union: “For those seeking the history of Andrew Cuomo’s tenure as attorney general through the State Archives, be advised: Members of the governor’s staff may go over the material before you arrive, review it after you leave and remove what they don’t think should be seen.” Cuomo’s aides are also pre-emptively reviewing documents before they are sent to the archives.

Cuomo’s office says it is taking action because the archives mistakenly released documents that should have remained private. Troopergate documents in particular should not have been released, the office says, because they were privileged. “Any first-year lawyer knows it is important to protect confidential informants and to preserve the attorney-client privilege,” according to a statement issued to the New York Times.

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