Hankton attorneys request identities of witnesses

New Orleans, La. - Attorneys for a convicted murderer want the federal government to turn over some information about witnesses.

Telly Hankton is known as one of the city's most notorious criminals.

According to court documents, Hankton's attorneys want federal prosecutors to hand over the identities of the witnesses that lead to his indictment.

Hankton's attorneys say witness information, including their names and whereabouts, is needed since the justice depatment is considering the death penalty.

His attorney's also say concerns over witness safety do not outweigh Hankton's constitutional rights to due process.

Prosecutors say Hankton, along with 12 others, operated a violent drug ring in the Uptown and Central City areas.

A 22-count federal indictment alleges members murdered rival drug dealers, intimidated wtinesses, and even murdered a witness' family member in an effort to obstruct justice.