NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Justice Department has appointed a veteran prosecutor to investigate allegations that the U.S. attorney's office conducted a smear campaign and leaked information to news organizations during the case against police officers accused of deadly shootings at a bridge shortly after Hurricane Katrina.

John Horn, first assistant U.S. attorney in the Northern District of Georgia, was assigned to ensure compliance with a federal judge's order for a new Justice Department investigation of the allegations.

The department said Horn will review an earlier U.S. attorney's office internal investigation. The new probe was ordered by U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt.

The allegations were made by attorneys seeking a new trial for five officers convicted on charges stemming from shootings at the Danziger Bridge in September 2005.

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