James Metts leaves the federal courthouse in Columbia earlier this week. (Source: WIS)
COLUMBIA, SC (AP) - Prosecutors are asking a judge to order the lawyer who advised the Lexington County Sheriff's Office while James Metts was sheriff to talk to investigators about his former boss.
Prosecutors say John Tate can't claim attorney-client privilege if his client was a public official using government resources for criminal activities. Current Sheriff Lewis McCarty gave Tate permission to talk to authorities in September, but he refused.
The U.S. Attorney's Office filed the motion Thursday, one day after U.S. District Judge Terry Wooten rejected a plea deal between prosecutors and Metts that would have sentenced him to three years of probation for hindering the possible deportation of workers at a friend's restaurant.
Wooten was bothered that the deal didn't include prison time.
Metts' lawyers have until Dec. 29 to respond.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.