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Tuesday, February 10, 1998 Published at 08:49 GMT


Lewinsky moves to prevent subpoena
image: [ Monica Lewinsky may be summoned to court on Thursday ]
Monica Lewinsky may be summoned to court on Thursday

Monica Lewinsky's lawyer has announced he is to file a motion to stop the independent Counsel Kenneth Starr, from forcing his client to testify before a grand jury.

William Ginsburg said that he also planned legal action to enforce, what he said, was a written deal with Mr Starr, that grants Lewinsky immunity from prosecution if she testifies in court.

[ image: Kenneth Starr: no agreement exists]
Kenneth Starr: no agreement exists
Mr Starr has denied that such an agreement exists.

Mr Ginsburg said that barring an unforeseen delay, he would file his motion to quash a Starr grand jury subpoena on Lewinsky in Washington on Tuesday.

He refused to confirm news reports that she had been called before the grand jury on Thursday, saying, "I don't know anything about that," adding that he would not talk about grand jury proceedings.

But earlier in the day Mr Ginsburg appeared to have confirmed the Thursday date, saying he had known about it for two weeks.

Legal fight over immunity

Mr Ginsburg has said several times that he planned to go to court to force Starr to honour a written offer of total immunity for his client.

Miss Lewinsky is alleged to have lied about an affair with Clinton in a deposition given to lawyers for Paula Jones in her sexual harassment suit against the president.

After making a brief statement to reporters on Monday afternoon, his third batch of comments to the press for the day, Mr Ginsburg visited Miss Lewinsky and began conferring in person with his client.

Since her arrival in Los Angeles last week, Miss Lewinsky has been a virtual prisoner in her father's house, unable to leave without a police escort for fear of being swamped by the media.

Mr Ginsburg said that he and his client would probably be returning to Washington later in the week. "I haven't decided. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, probably, but that depends on my caseload here and Monica's personal desires," he said.

Media leaks must stop

[ image: William Ginsburg will file his motion on Tuesday]
William Ginsburg will file his motion on Tuesday
Mr Ginsburg said the leaks of information to the media in the case, especially those disparaging his client, had to stop.

He said he would support Mr Clinton's attorney in trying to stop the leaks, adding that they "are disastrous. It makes it impossible to achieve fairness in any sense of the word. The leaks must be stopped. It's unfair."

"Anything that Mr. Kendall files I'll support to stop the leaks," Mr Ginsburg said in a reference to Clinton's lawyer, David Kendall, who reportedly filed a complaint on Monday against Starr's office.

Stressing that his client was "an ordinary citizen," Mr Ginsburg said: "I wonder if you can imagine how unfair all these leaks are to Monica. I'd venture a guess that the American public has already made a decision as to what happened. Monica hasn't said one word."

Meanwhile, Washington's envoy to the United Nations, Bill Richardson, told CNN that he felt it was "common courtesy" to interview Miss Lewinsky for a job after he was asked to do so by the Deputy White House Chief of Staff, John Podesta.

"She qualified for a low-level public affairs job. My office offered it to her; she turned it down. That was it," Richardson said.

"She was well-spoken, she was intelligent, she interviewed well," he said when asked why he offered her a job on his staff. "She impressed me."

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