US government releases once-secret Watergate files
WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States (US) government on Friday released more than 850 pages of once-secret documents from the Watergate political scandal, providing new insights on privileged legal conversations and prison evaluations of some burglars in the case. A federal judge had decided earlier this month to unseal some material, but other records still remain off limits.
The files do not appear to provide any significant new revelations in the 40-year-old case that led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon and criminal prosecutions of many of his top White House and political aides.
But the files provide useful context for historians, revealing behind-the-scenes deliberations by the judge then in charge of the case, US District Court Judge John J. Sirica, along with prosecutors and defense lawyers.
The files showed Sirica at times discussing the case with special prosecutors and justifying his attempts to learn new facts in the case.