Ship Pilot Will Seek To Have Federal Charges Thrown Out

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The lawyer for the ship pilot who struck the San Francisco Bay Bridge in November says Captain John Cota will seek to have the charges thrown out.

Cota appeared in federal court Friday and the judge set a July 18 court date for the motion to dismiss. The most serious charge accuses Cota of lying on annual medical reports required by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Defense attorney Jeffrey Bornstein told reporters outside the courtroom that Cota had no intention of misleading authorities when he listed a host of prescription medications he was taking.

Cota's lawyer also said he will seek a change of venue, arguing for a potential trial to be held outside the San Francisco region because, he says, prospective jurors in the Bay Area have been poisoned by leaked government accusations.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-05-09-08 1518EDT


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