OPENING SHOTS

WITH THE OKLAHOMA TRIAL ON THE HORIZON, THE DEFENSE AND THE GOVERNMENT STEP UP THEIR SPARRING

Stephen Jones, the colorful, self-aggrandizing attorney for Timothy McVeigh, was feeling smug last week. With the Oklahoma City bombing case drawing to within two months of its trial date, he and the government were providing an advance look at their rival strategies. In a conversation with TIME, Jones savored disclosures that he believes will complicate the prosecution. "Our case is in better shape," he said. "Tim and I feel very good about the case."

What has made Jones and "Tim" feel very good, first of all, is a Justice Department report on the FBI crime lab in Washington that criticizes some...

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