Ruling in sweeps lawsuit against sheriff postponed

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PHOENIX -- A judge hearing a lawsuit over immigration patrols by the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office has postponed a ruling on whether to give the agency more time to hand over e-mails.

Instead, U.S. District Judge Murray Snow will take up the request at a hearing Friday.

A sheriff's lawyer wanted the June 11 deadline moved to Aug. 11 because the huge volume of e-mails is taking longer than expected to wade through.

Opposing attorneys who alleged racial profiling by sheriff's deputies had sought e-mails about the patrols, but some e-mails were deleted in what the agency said was an unintentional error.

Some deleted e-mails may be recovered, because Maricopa County had backed up e-mails by the agency as part of an unrelated lawsuit.

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