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The temporary closure of the courtroom to a defendant’s family during jury selection did not violate the right to a public trial because the defense consented, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has ruled. Upholding the 2009 conviction and life sentence of Amilcar Gomez for murder in aid of racketeering and other crimes, the circuit said Eastern District Judge Sterling Johnson (See Profile) did not violate Gomez’s Sixth Amendment rights when he asked the family to step outside because there weren’t enough seats for prospective jurors.

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