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Published August 12, 2010, 07:51 AM

Judge rules on evidence in 1975 case

A judge says an alleged murder confession by American Indian Movement leader Leonard Peltier should be allowed as evidence in a decades-old South Dakota murder case.

A judge says an alleged murder confession by American Indian Movement leader Leonard Peltier should be allowed as evidence in a decades-old South Dakota murder case.

John Graham and Thelma Rios are scheduled for trial in state court later this year for the killing of former AIM member Annie Mae Aquash.

Judge John Delaney says Peltier's alleged confession to Aquash that he killed two FBI agents could be relevant. Prosecutors believe AIM leaders ordered Aquash killed because they thought she was a government informant.

Peltier is serving two life sentences. He's maintained his innocence.

The judge also ruled in favor of a defense request to keep prosecutors from introducing a note that allegedly served as an order to execute Aquash.

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