Cuccinelli: Academic Freedom Not a Barrier in Research Investigation

By: LARRY O'DELL - Associated Press Writer
By: LARRY O'DELL - Associated Press Writer

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says the concept of academic freedom is not a legal barrier to his investigation of a former University of Virginia professor's climate change research.

Cuccinelli is investigating whether Michael Mann defrauded taxpayers by using manipulated data to seek state funds for his research. The university is fighting Cuccinelli's attempt to obtain records under the state fraud act.

In a 40-page brief filed Tuesday in Albemarle County Circuit Court, Cuccinelli argues that academic freedom is rooted in the First Amendment, which cannot be used to thwart a fraud investigation.

The university has until July 20 to reply to the brief. A hearing is set for August 20.

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