The Cover-Up Defense

A country lawyer challenges the government in an Iraq-gate trial

GEORGIA LAWYER BOBBY LEE COOK HAS MADE A career of goading government. His latest battle is an eleventh-hour effort to derail the Justice Department's prosecution of Christopher Drogoul, the banker accused of making $4 billion in loans to Saddam Hussein's regime before the invasion of Kuwait.

The case was all but closed. In June, Drogoul, 43, former manager of the Atlanta branch of the Italian Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, pleaded guilty to 60 counts of a 347-count federal indictment that accused him of devising an elaborate "off-books" scheme to hide $4 billion in unbacked loans and unauthorized U.S.-backed credits to Iraq....

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