The state court's ruled that the University of Virginia would not be considered a "person" under a state law called the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act. The court also ruled that even "reading 'corporations' to include UVA would produce the inexplicable and awkward result that state agencies operating as public corporations are subject to FATA while other arms of the Commonwealth are not."
Cuccinelli, a global warming skeptic, defended his office's investigation.
"From the beginning, we have said that we were simply trying to review documents that are unquestionably state property to determine whether or not fraud had been committed," Cuccinelli's office said in an email to the Washington Post. "Today, the court effectively held that state agencies do not have to provide state-owned property to state investigators looking into potential fraud involving government funds."