McVeigh tells newspaper John Doe No. 2 did not exist

HOUSTON, Reuters

Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh, whose execution is on hold because of an FBI blunder, has said in a letter that there was never a “John Doe No. 2” helping him with the 1995 bombing that killed 168 people, the Houston Chronicle reported late on Monday in its online edition.

In Los Angles, the Times reported in its Tuesday editions that the FBI has ordered its offices all over the world to examine their records for material on McVeigh after more undisclosed records were found in Baltimore.

The orders calls for “all bureau field offices and attaches to comb their files for any more documents that have not been turned over to Timothy McVeigh’s lawyers,” the newspaper said in a story from Washington, citing an unnamed source.

McVeigh, 33, was set to die by lethal injection on May 16, but the execution was postponed last week by U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft after the FBI disclosed it had inadvertently withheld more than 3,000 documents from McVeigh’s defense attorneys before his 1997 trial.

Seven more documents were found in the Baltimore office late last week and were to be delivered to defense attorneys on Monday, the sources told the Times. “Neither the total number of pages, nor their specific content could be determined Monday,” the newspaper said.

“Like the material found in other offices, however, the Baltimore documents were discounted by government sources, who said they have no relevance to McVeigh’s guilt or innocence,” the newspaper reported.

A Justice Department official, who asked to remain anonymous, told the Times that there are worries that if more material is found, “it will be all the more embarrassing to federal law enforcement.”

In his response to the Houston newspaper, McVeigh, in a one-page letter written on May 2 to answer a Chronicle reporter’s inquiries, disputed assertions by his former attorney, Stephen Jones, that John Doe No. 2 existed and said that if he did, Jones likely would have been killed.

“Jones has been thoroughly discredited, so I’m not going to break a sweat refuting his outlandish claims point-by-point,” he wrote. “The truth is on my side.”

“Does anyone honestly believe that if there as a John Doe #2 (there is not), that Stephen Jones would still be alive. … Think about it,” McVeigh said in the letter written from the federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana where he is awaiting execution.