18 CFR § 1b.16 - Rights of witnesses.

§ 1b.16 Rights of witnesses.

(a) Any person who is compelled or requested to furnish documentary evidence or testimony in a formal investigation shall, upon request, be shown the Commission's Order of Investigation. Copies of Orders of Investigation shall not be furnished, for their retention, to such persons requesting the same except with the express approval of the director of the office responsible for the investigation. Such approval shall not be given unless the director of the office responsible for the investigation, in the director's discretion is satisfied that there exist reasons consistent with the protection of privacy of persons involved in the investigation and with the unimpeded conduct of the investigation.

(b) Any person compelled to appear, or who appears in person at a formal investigation by request or permission of the Investigating Officer may be accompanied, represented and advised by counsel, as provided by § 385.2101 of this chapter and these rules, except that all witnesses shall be sequestered and, unless permitted in the discretion of the Investigating Officer, no witness or the counsel accompanying any such witness shall be permitted to be present during the examination of any other witness called in such proceeding. When counsel does represent more than one person in an investigation, for example, where the counsel is counsel to the witness and his employer, said counsel shall inform the Investigating Officer and each client of said counsel's possible conflict of interest in representing that client and, if said counsel appears with a witness giving testimony on the record in an investigation, counsel shall state on the record all persons said counsel represents in the investigation.

(c) Any witness may be accompanied, represented, and advised by counsel as follows:

(1) Counsel for a witness may advise the witness, in confidence, upon his initiative or the witness' with respect to any question, and if the witness refuses to answer a question, then the witness or counsel may briefly state on the record the legal grounds for such refusal.

(2) Where it is claimed that the witness has a privilege to refuse to answer a question on the grounds of self-incrimination, the witness must assert the privilege personally.

(3) Following completion of the examination of a witness, such witness may make a statement on the record and his counsel may on the record question the witness to enable the witness to clarify any of the witness' answers or to offer other evidence.

(4) The Investigating Officer shall take all necessary action to regulate the course of the proceeding to avoid delay and prevent or restrain obstructionist or contumacious conduct or contemptuous language. Such officer may report to the Commission any instances where an attorney or representative has refused to comply with his directions, or has engaged in obstructionist or contumacious conduct or has used contemptuous language in the course of the proceeding. The Commission may thereupon take such further action as the circumstances may warrant, including suspension or disbarment of counsel from further appearance or practice before it, in accordance with § 385.2101 of this chapter, or exclusion from further participation in the particular investigation.

(d) Unless otherwise ordered by the Commission, in any public formal investigation, if the record shall contain implications of wrongdoing by any person, such person shall have the right to appear on the record; and in addition to the rights afforded other witnesses hereby, he shall have a reasonable opportunity of cross-examination and production of rebuttal testimony or documentary evidence. Reasonable shall mean permitting persons as full an opportunity to assert their position as may be granted consistent with administrative efficiency and with avoidance of undue delay. The determinations of reasonableness in each instance shall be made in the discretion of the investigating officer.

[43 FR 27174, June 23, 1978, as amended by Order 225, 47 FR 19054, May 3, 1982]