Associated Press - August 30, 2010 12:35 PM ET
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A judge has ruled that Virginia's attorney general has failed to specify how a former University of Virginia climate-change researcher defrauded state taxpayers to obtain government grants.
Retired Albemarle County Circuit Judge Paul M. Peatross Jr. ruled Monday that the university can be subject to an investigation by Ken Cuccinelli.
But Peatross said Cuccinelli's two so-called "civil investigative demands" for Michael Mann's records fail to spell out the nature of Mann's alleged wrongdoing.
Cuccinelli, a global warming skeptic, alleges that Mann violated Virginia's Fraud Against Taxpayers Act by using manipulated data to obtain grants.
Peatross left open the door for Cuccinelli to try again, if he satisfies the legal requirements.