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A federal appeals court on Tuesday delayed the release of a list of unindicted co-conspirators in the 2013 George Washington Bridge lane-closing scandal as it considers whether to allow someone named on the list to block its publication.

The ruling from the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia called for a June 6 hearing for attorneys to present their arguments. The ruling left open the possibility that the hearing could be closed to the public.

A federal judge ruled last week that the list should be released by noon Tuesday after a request from media organizations including The Associated Press several months ago.

The same judge on Friday denied a request by the person on the list, identified as John Doe, to further delay the release of names of unindicted co-conspirators in the plot. Doe then appealed to the 3rd Circuit.

Doe's attorney, Jenny Kramer, has argued in court filings that Doe would be "publicly branded a felon" without the chance to clear his name in court, violating his rights to due process.

Bruce Rosen, an attorney for the media companies, called Doe's attempt "frivolous and desperate" in a response filing and argued that the due process clause doesn't protect a person's reputation. He also wrote that names of unindicted co-conspirators often are revealed during a trial anyway.

Bridget Kelly, Republican Gov. Chris Christie former deputy chief of staff, and Bill Baroni, a top Christie appointee to the agency that operates the bridge, have been indicted and face trial this fall. A second former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey official has pleaded guilty.


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