PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A legal battle is now underway over what happens next in the Orie case.
The KDKA Investigators have learned that federal investigators will now be used to determine who may have produced the alleged fraudulent documents introduced as evidence in the state senator’s trial, which led to a mistrial.
In a hearing Friday morning, prosecutors asked and received permission to have of the documents submitted by state Sen. Jane Orie’s defense team sent out to be examined by experts.
It looks like the United States Secret Service and the Pennsylvania State Police will be used. They are expected to try and determine if there are more so-called altered documents, where the documents were made and who may have done it.
Sources tell the KDKA Investigators that experts will now look at more than 50 documents submitted by Orie’s team in an attempt to determine if there are additional forgeries or altered documents.
In the meantime, sources tell the KDKA Investigators that once testing of the documents is complete, prosecutors believe they have enough evidence right now to file new charges against state Sen. Orie.
Sources indicate prosecutors may file fraud, perjury, obstruction of justice, tampering with evidence and fabrication of evidence charges against Orie.
Orie attorney William Costopoulos spoke briefly on Thursday, saying in court she had nothing to do with any sort of forgery or document alteration.
“I said what I said in court and I meant what I said in court and I’m going to go with what I said in court, thank you very much,” said Costopoulos.
Meanwhile, investigators are expected to take two to three weeks to run tests on the 50 or so documents submitted as evidence by the Orie defense team.
Judge Jeffrey Manning set a new trial date of April 11 in the case. However, Orie’s attorney plans an appeal, suggesting a new trial would constitute double jeopardy.
An appeal could delay any possible trial for months, maybe longer.