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Federal Rule of Evidence 501 governs the nature and scope of a privilege claimed in proceedings before a federal grand jury. See In re Katz, 623 F.2d 122, 124 n.1 (2d Cir. 1980). The rule instructs that 'the privilege of a witness, person, government, State, or political subdivision thereof shall be governed by the principles of the common law as they may be interpreted by the courts of the United States in the light of reason and experience.' Fed. R. Evid. 501. Our determination of whether the Office of the Governor may claim a privilege, then, requires us to ascertain 'the principles of the common law' and to apply them 'in the light of reason and experience.' In doing so, while we may draw on the law of privilege as it has developed in state courts, we are not bound by it. In criminal cases, Rule 501 plainly requires that we apply the federal law of privilege. See United States v. Gillock, 445 U.S. 360, 368, 100 S. Ct. 1185, 63 L. Ed. 2d 454 (1980).


There is little case law addressing the application of the attorney-client privilege to governmental entities. 'The attorney-client privilege is one ...

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