A federal judge rebuffed an unusual effort by retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Richard V. Secord to block independent counsel Lawrence E. Walsh from indicting him in the Iran-contra affair.
U.S. District Court Judge Aubrey E. Robinson Jr., in a brief court order, yesterday rejected a bid by Secord for an emergency stay of any indictment pending an appeal of his unsuccessful petition to present evidence to Walsh's grand jury.
Robinson said the legal move, which Walsh opposed, appeared to be "without precedent or merit."
Secord's emergency motion, filed yesterday by his attorney, Thomas Green, followed his unusual Jan. 14 request to Robinson to force Walsh to allow him to appear before the grand jury to try to persuade jurors not to indict him.
A key operative in the secret arms sales to Iran and diversion of profits to the Nicaraguan rebels, Secord wants to present testimony from other key players in the affair, including Lt. Col. Oliver L. North and former national security adviser John M. Poindexter, that was given on Capitol Hill under grants of immunity from prosecution.
Walsh is not allowed to use such testimony in seeking criminal indictments, and his office has gone to great lengths since the congressional testimony to insulate attorneys from any disclosures.
Robinson dismissed that bid Jan 19.