Brian Gaffney of San Francisco's Lippe Gaffney Wagner, representing the Institute for Policy Studies, rejected a proposal from the CIA to cut out other agencies from the search for records.
Gaffney also didn't like the idea of limiting the request to documents to those in which Escobar was the focus of the record and not just named somewhere in the file.
The CIA suggested that approach would speed up the search. Gaffney, however, questioned the merits of that position, arguing on Tuesday in court that he's unwilling to allow the CIA to make subjective decisions about whether or not a document is relevant.
The institute, Gaffney said in court records, is trying to help out the CIA by restricting the search for records to the period between 1989 and 1995 and by allowing a rolling production of documents.
The case will drag on for at least another month or so, if not longer. Haynes said the CIA could file papers in January asking Lamberth to clarify the scope of the universe of records the CIA must look for.
But it's clear Lamberth isn't interested in letting the dispute trudge on for years.
"You come in 2012 and say 'give us another five years,'" Lamberth said. "It's preposterous."
This article first appeared on The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times.