Press: Piercing a Newsman's Shield

Free speech and fair trial collide, and the Times gets hurt

In a quiet hospital in suburban New Jersey, 13 patients die mysteriously during 1965 and 1966. Ten years later, a reporter for the New York Times, M.A. (for Myron Abba) Farber, reveals that mostly empty vials of a powerful and potentially lethal drug called curare were found in the locker of a certain "Doctor X." The state begins to investigate. What some experts believe to be traces of curare are found in exhumed bodies, and a grand jury indicts the man Farber, in his stories, had carefully called only Doctor X—Surgeon Mario...

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