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News Briefs 2

Fuhrman May Be Charged With Perjury at Simpson Trial

Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles District Attorney Gil Garcetti, saying he feared "the appearance of a conflict of interest," on Monday turned over to the California attorney general's office the responsibility of determining whether to charge former police detective Mark Fuhrman with perjury at O.J. Simpson's double murder trial.

Garcetti said his office could not handle the investigation because members of his office have taken a public position on the perjury question that undermines a criminal charge. He also cited the high level of emotionalism in his office about the Simpson case.

To prove perjury, Garcetti noted, the law requires that a witness be shown not only to have knowingly lied, but that the lie be proven "material" to the case.

In the Simpson trial, Garcetti's prosecutors argued strenuously that any lies Fuhrman may have told under oath were insignificant in deciding Simpson's guilt or innocence in the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Lyle Goldman.

In his allegedly perjured testimony, Fuhrman denied that he had used a racial slur that denigrates black people during the last decade. He was later flatly contradicted by four defense witnesses, including an aspiring screenwriter who brought to court tape recordings of Fuhrman using the slur at least 41 times and bragging about illegal and unethical conduct.

A main thrust of Simpson's defense was that Fuhrman is a white "genocidal racist" who could have framed a black man like Simpson.

1,400 U.S. Troops Will Be in NATO Advance Group Arriving in Bosnia

The Washington Post

About 1,400 U.S. troops will be in a 2,600-strong NATO advance group that will arrive in Bosnia and Croatia next week or earlier to set up headquarters, communications lines and supply routes for the full-scale peacekeeping operation to come later, Pentagon and administration officials said Monday.

President Clinton said in his speech Monday night that a "small number" of American troops would be part of the advance mission, "starting sometime next week." Clinton previously had informed Congress that some U.S. units would be sent ahead of the main peacekeeping mission of up to 25,000 U.S. troops, and administration officials had estimated the number at several hundred.

New details were provided about the advance deployment after a two-page "mission statement" was approved Saturday by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Joint Chiefs traditionally approve such a document before any deployment of U.S. troops.

Titled "Mission, Tasks, Exit Strategy," it reinforces the 18-page military annex to the Balkans peace accord signed just outside Dayton, Ohio last week. Both give the NATO-led force "enormously broad authority" in Bosnia, one high-ranking administration official said Monday.

The troops would create the military infrastructure necessary to support a larger deployment of up to 60,000 NATO troops.

The primary mission of the NATO-led force will be to enforce a so-called "zone of separation" among the warring parties: Serbs, Muslims and Croats. All forces must withdraw from the zone within 30 days.