Labor Secretary Raymond J. Donovan's lawyers have asked a special federal court here to take back grand jury evidence that the court gave to Bronx prosecutors last spring and that apparently formed part of the basis for Donovan's indictment in a New York state court this fall.
The move, according to sources familiar with the case, was made last week in the special prosecutor's division of the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals here. The division has custody of the grand jury testimony and other records developed during special prosecutor Leon Silverman's 1982 investigation of alleged ties between Donovan and organized-crime figures.
Donovan's lawyer, William O. Bittman, confirmed that he had filed "a sealed motion" concerning the grand larceny and fraud charges against Donovan and 10 other defendants in the Bronx, but Bittman declined to comment further.
Silverman, who found "insufficient credible evidence" to warrant Donovan's prosecution on any federal charge, said that his aides posed "no objection" when Bronx prosecutors sought some of the documents compiled during his inquiry. He said he made no legal analysis of the sufficiency of the Bronx requests.
"All we did was indicate we had no objection to the [special] court's giving them anything we developed," Silverman told a reporter.