Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) takes his case before a Washington, D.C. appeals court panel today, in a move to get back documents the congressmanâs lawyers say were wrongfully snatched from his office by the FBI in a raid
Jefferson has been the brunt of FBI searches and a battery of allegations
after he accepted $100,000 from an undercover FBI informant last year, and then stashed the money meant to bribe the Vice President of Nigeria, in his freezer, wrapped in frozen food packaging and aluminum foil.*
The freezer cash isnât at issue today, though.
Jeffersonâs lawyers are going to argue that the Constitutionâs âSpeech or Debateâ clause should have shielded their client from the search of his Congressional office. Politicians on both sides of the aisle rallied
around Jefferson last year in support of his argument.
The clause, found here in Article 1, Section 6
They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.*Update
: This post originally stated that Jefferson has been charged. He has not.