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Peterson lawyer seeks trial immediately

Mark Geragos, who is defending Scott Peterson, is also leading the defense for Michael Jackson.
Mark Geragos, who is defending Scott Peterson, is also leading the defense for Michael Jackson.

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REDWOOD CITY, California (CNN) -- The parties in the Scott Peterson double murder trial were in court Monday to consider a number of issues, including sequestering the jury.

Reports from the courtroom indicate the defense favors that move, while the prosecution opposes.

With estimates the trial could last more than six months, sequestering a jury could cost more than $1 million, officials said.

Judge Alfred Delucchi said he would begin Wednesday to hear arguments about the admissibility of certain evidence in the trial, with jury selection to begin in two weeks.

Late Thursday, defense attorney Mark Geragos filed notice that he is ready to proceed "immediately."

In a brief notice filed by fax with San Mateo Superior Court, Geragos stated, "Please take notice that Mr. Peterson's counsel, Mark J. Geragos, is not currently engaged in trial before any court and is prepared to proceed to trial immediately."

Last month, Geragos had sought a delay until February 17, citing other cases, but last week he amended his request to one week.

The high-profile defense attorney is involved in at least three other cases, including a murder trial in southern California and singer Michael Jackson's defense against charges of committing lewd acts upon a child.

Peterson is charged with killing his wife, Laci, and their unborn son in December 2002.

Laci Peterson was last seen on Christmas Eve 2002, and the bodies washed up separately on the shore of San Francisco Bay in April 2003. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Peterson told police that he was fishing in the bay on the day his wife disappeared and had launched his boat from the Berkeley Marina. The bodies washed ashore just miles from the marina.

The trial was moved from Stanislaus County to San Mateo County last month because of pre-trial publicity.


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