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Secret Indictments: How to Discourage Them, How to Make Them Fair


The United States should discourage secrecy in criminal prosecutions through both its legal doctrine and policy. While secrecy is necessary in some circumstances, as a general matter, it threatens constitutional rights and contravenes our fundamental notions of fairness in the criminal adjudication process. In light of this, Rule 6 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (FRCRP) and the prevailing common law of secret indictments in federal courts must be reformed.