Butler's Second Day to Testify - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/21/03

Butler's Second Day to Testify

Today, Doctor Thomas Butler could still offer no clear explanation as to what happened to those 30 missing vials of the plague bacteria.

Butler was very calm on the stand as he answered the prosecution's questions, and he appeared to answer them carefully. The prosecution confronted Butler about allegedly illegally transporting the plague, tax reports, possible contract manipulations, which points to defrauding Texas Tech Health Sciences Center of research grant money.

However, Butler would deny he did anything wrong. Butler testified he didn't know about proper paper work to transport agents from country to country and went on to say he did not mean to "intentionally" deceive anyone.

Also, Butler, without hesitation, testified that he believed his tax forms were filled out correctly because the IRS had not notified him otherwise.

As for those contracts between the drug companies, Butler and the HSC. Was that properly arranged, and was Butler's direct payment against TTUHSC policy? Butler said he felt he was doing it right or Tech would have contacted him.

But, still, Butler could not give the prosecution or the jury recollection of how the 30 vials were missing or even possibly destroyed.

The prosecution started going over Butler's written statement he gave to FBI agents in January 2003. That issue revolves around whether or not the FBI dictated to Butler on what to write in his confession to law enforcement explaining what happened to the vials.

The prosecution will pick up from there on Monday.

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