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Judge says ATP documents belong with grand jury

By Associated Press
Published On: Mar 08 2013 04:15:37 PM MST
AMERICAN TRADITION PARTNERSHIP
HELENA, Mont. -

A federal judge says the state properly gave a federal grand jury documents dealing with a secretive conservative group.
    
The ruling comes in a case surrounding the disputed files connected to American Tradition Partnership.
    
ATP has been seeking their return, saying they were stolen in Denver in 2010 before someone sent them to the Montana commissioner of political practices.
    
A state district court judge sided with the group in December and ordered them placed in the lower court's custody.
    
But U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy on Friday tossed out that state court order.
    
Molloy says the commissioner had no choice but to turn them over to a federal grand jury investigation when the grand jury asked for them.
    
The focus of the investigation is not known.