FBI refuses to disclose records on Trayvon Martin investigation

Feds ask judge to withdraw demand for records

Published On: Feb 27 2013 03:40:56 PM EST   Updated On: Feb 28 2013 07:36:25 AM EST
George Zimmerman, Trayvon Martin
SANFORD, Fla. -

An attorney for the U.S. government is resisting a court's order that the FBI give the defense documents related to the death of Trayvon Martin.

The judge in the George Zimmerman murder case has "no power or authority" to order the FBI  to turn over documents to Zimmerman's defense, the government argued in an objection filed Monday.

Federal law and regulations prohibit the agency from turning over the records without Department of Justice approval, according to the U.S. Attorney's office in Tampa.

Federal law is "supreme," the government argues, so Judge Deborah Nelson should rescind her order that they share records with Zimmerman's defense.

The government said it has assisted the defense in how to make "a proper request for documents," but the court filing does not say the government would provide the records even if a proper request were made.

The FBI investigated whether Zimmerman acted with racial bias when he shot and killed Trayvon Martin last year. It found insufficient evidence to charge Zimmerman with a federal violation of Martin's civil rights.