Two of Timothy McVeigh's attorneys say they will meet with him Thursday at the federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind., to help him decide whether he will ask a federal judge to block his June 11 execution for the Oklahoma City bombing.
While the meeting occurs, attorney Nathan Chambers will remain in Denver to file the necessary documents if McVeigh gives his legal team permission.
The attorneys refused Wednesday to predict what McVeigh will do, though Chambers said McVeigh believes newly released FBI documents are worthy of judicial review.
At his office in Tulsa, Okla., Rob Nigh declined to specify what legal documents will be discussed, but said: "You can certainly anticipate it will request a stay."
McVeigh has been sentenced to receive a lethal injection for killing 168 people in the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.
What would have been the first federal execution in 38 years was postponed this month after the Justice Department turned over thousands of FBI documents it admits should have been given to McVeigh's lawyers during his trial.
Justice Department spokeswoman Chris Watney declined to comment on the agency's options. Attorney General John Ashcroft said the government would fight any further delay, saying that failure to carry out the death sentence "would deny justice for the victims of this crime and for the American people."
Last December, McVeigh went against his attorney's advice and asked a federal judge to stop further appeals. He also requested an execution date.
"Obviously his lawyers have gotten toward the first hurdle," said Denver attorney Scott Robinson, who observed McVeigh's trial. "They have multiple hurdles to get through to stay the execution. The first one is Timothy McVeigh."
Attorney Stephen Jones, who represented McVeigh at trial, speculated McVeigh's lawyers saw something that may have suggested other suspects. Jones has maintained McVeigh did not act alone, a claim McVeigh has denied.
"I think they will stress the integrity of the judicial process and the fact that withholding material violated the court's orders," Jones said.
Robinson said McVeigh may agree to request a delay to make a statement to U.S. District Judge Richard Matsch about how evidence in the trial was handled.
"I don't think he would do it unless it fit his agenda of depicting the federal government as an evil force to be fought at all costs," Robinson said.
McVeigh has admitted in a book that he was responsible for the Oklahoma City bombing. The statements could hurt any appeal of his sentence but not a request to delay the execution, observers said.
"What you have is a hearsay statement," Jones said. "I don't think the judge will be impressed with that unless someone presents it under oath. Even then the argument could be made that Tim McVeigh made that statement in a self-serving manner, and it shouldn't be the end of the inquiry."
— Fox News' Rita Cosby and the AP contributed to this report