The largest civil racketeering case in U.S. history is scheduled for trial starting today -- a $280 billion case against the tobacco industry. Despite the size of the case, there has been a notable absence of comment from Attorney General John Ashcroft or his deputies in the days leading up to the trial. Lawyers, lobbyists and others say the lack of public statements signals the political sensitivity within the Justice Department and the Bush administration regarding the suit.
DOJ Lies Low as Massive Tobacco Trial Opens
September 21, 2004