WASHINGTON — A lawyer for arms dealer Albert Hakim, revealing today that his client is a target of the Iran- contra investigation, claimed that Hakim has a Fifth Amendment right to refuse to surrender foreign corporate records linked to the scandal.
Hakim, the financier of the Iran-contra scandal, is the latest figure in the foreign policy affair to lodge a challenge in federal court against independent prosecutor Lawrence E. Walsh.
Appearing before the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, Hakim's attorney, Richard Janis, argued that his client cannot be compelled to turn over corporate records of unidentified foreign companies, because they could eventually be used as evidence against Hakim.
Walsh's federal grand jury has subpoenaed those records.
"When a custodian of records is compelled to produce documents . . . that could later prove incriminating . . . then he has Fifth Amendment protections," Janis told the three-judge panel.