Court tosses out subpoena for Kitzhaber e-mails

Court said subpoena was too broad

Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber addresses the media over allegations concerning First Lady Cylvia Hayes, Jan. 30, 2015, two weeks before his resignation. (KOIN 6 News)
Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber addresses the media over allegations concerning First Lady Cylvia Hayes, Jan. 30, 2015, two weeks before his resignation. (KOIN 6 News)

SALEM, Ore. (AP) – A federal appellate court panel has ruled that a subpoena seeking emails from former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber as part of an influence-peddling investigation is too broad.

In a ruling Wednesday, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel reversed a lower court’s order.

Kitzhaber resigned in 2015 amid suspicion that his fiancee, Cylvia Hayes, used her relationship with him to earn lucrative consulting contracts. Federal authorities are investigating and the FBI has issued subpoenas for emails and thousands of other records for review by a grand jury.

The couple have denied wrongdoing.

In its ruling the appellate panel said Kitzhaber had a reasonable expectation of privacy in much of his personal email and that the subpoena “is unreasonable and invalid.” The panel said it expected another subpoena to be issued consistent with its ruling and that Kitzhaber may not assert attorney-client privilege for communication with attorneys for the state.

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