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Judicial emergency officially extended for 1 year

A court emergency declared for Arizona’s federal courts because of a shortage of judges has been formally extended for a full year.

The decision to confirm the emergency declaration was made this week by a panel of federal judges for the 9th Circuit.

The declaration suspends part of a federal law requiring a trial to start within 70 days of a defendant’s indictment. Trials now must start within 180 days.

Chief District Judge Rosyln Silver suspended part of the Speedy Trial Act in January after the death of her predecessor in the shooting that wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

Only 10 of 13 judgeships in Arizona are filed and the caseload normally would support as many as 18 judges.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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