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The National Football League’s “Spygate” controversy won’t go away, and two Washington law firms have been pulled into the fray. For months, the NFL’s highest-profile franchise, the New England Patriots, has been dogged by league inquiries into whether the team spied on opponents. Now, McKee Nelson partner Michael Levy, head of the firm’s white-collar and enforcement practice, is representing Matt Walsh, a former Patriots employee who allegedly taped a St. Louis Rams practice the day before the team played the Patriots in the 2002 Super Bowl. Representing the NFL are Gregg Levy and Eric Holder Jr. of Covington & Burling. Both declined to comment. Of note: Holder hired Michael Levy as an assistant U.S. attorney in 1995, when Holder was the U.S. attorney for the District. Both the NFL and Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, want to talk to Walsh. Now the two sides are negotiating terms for Walsh to tell the league what he knows. In return for Walsh’s testimony, Levy wants the NFL to offer him full legal protection. “I’m waiting to hear back from the NFL,” says Levy. To this point, the NFL has not wanted to release Walsh from liability if his statements prove false. Spygate first unfolded during the opening game last season, when a Patriots employee was caught recording the New York Jets’ defensive signals from the sidelines.
Nathan Carlile can be contacted at [email protected].

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