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Roger Clemens ready to fight as perjury trial opens Wednesday

Roger Clemens: Judge Reggie Walton said at a hearing that statements from former Yankees could unfairly influence jurors.

By Neda PicklerAssociated Press / July 5, 2011

Former Major League Baseball pitcher Roger Clemens (l.) walks with members of his legal team including attorney Rusty Hardin (r.) after a hearing leading up to his trial on charges that he lied to Congress about performance-enhancing drug use, from the federal courthouse in Washington, on July 5.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

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WASHINGTON

The federal judge who will preside over Roger Clemens' perjury trial says he probably will not permit the pitcher's former teammates on the New York Yankees to give testimony aimed at bolstering the credibility of Clemens' former trainer, now a major prosecution witness.

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U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton said at a hearing Tuesday that statements from former Yankees Andy Pettite, Chuck Knoblauch and Mike Stanton that they received injections of performance-enhancing drugs from the trainer, Brian McNamee, could unfairly influence jurors.

Walton said he also is inclined to prevent Clemens' defense team from telling jurors about rape allegations against McNamee that did not result in charges.

The judge also warned of a possible delay in the trial that is set to begin Wednesday, concerning the inability to obtain the audio of Clemens' deposition to House investigators in 2008.

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