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San Diego Judge Burns Tapped for Loughner Case

Greg Moran reports for the San Diego Union-Tribune:

U.S. District Judge Larry A. Burns of San Diego was appointed Wednesday to preside over the case of Jared Loughner, the Tucson man accused of shooting Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killing a federal judge and five others.

The 56-year-old Burns was named to the case after all the federal judges in Arizona recused themselves to avoid the appearance they could not be impartial in a trial of Loughner. One of the victims who was shot in a Tucson supermarket parking lot Saturday was Judge John Roll, the district's chief judge.

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Burns was a federal prosecutor in San Diego from 1985 to 1997, building a formidable reputation as the office's top lawyer tackling -- and winning -- the most difficult cases. [He and defense lawyer Judy Clarke] squared off in several cases.

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