Jurors May Hear 9/11 Cockpit Recording

Updated: A federal judge in New York has ruled that a jury may hear part of the cockpit voice recording made in the minutes before the crash of a plane hijacked by the Sept. 11 terrorists.

Judge Alvin Hellerstein said two parts of the recording are likely to be relevant, the New York Law Journal reports. One is a voice announcing that hijackers have a bomb on board. Another is the sound of passengers trying to enter the cockpit to foil the hijackers.

The recording was placed under seal in the prosecution of Zaracias Moussaoui, who pleaded guilty to plotting to fly a plane into the White House, but the judge released a transcript (PDF).

Hellerstein ruled in a suit for damages filed by Adelaide Maureen Driscoll, whose husband died in the crash of United Airlines Flight 93. Driscoll filed one of 41 pending suits against the airlines, security companies and other defendants. Hellerstein has allowed six cases to proceed on the issue of damages only, so that the results can be weighed by other litigants in settlement discussions, ABAJournal.com noted in an earlier post.

Most victims sought recovery from a special compensation fund. Driscoll is represented by plaintiffs firm Ness Motley of South Carolina.

Originally posted 9-13-2007 at 8:34 AM.

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