Federal Trade Commission-Adjudicatory Proceedings-Receipt of Evidence in Camera

During an adjudicatory hearing pursuant to a complaint filed by the Federal Trade Commission, counsel for the Commission offered as evidence some confidential documents subpoenaed from respondent. The hearing examiner, on his own motion, ordered all confidential documents placed in camera. Counsel for the FTC objected to the order and filed an interlocutory appeal to the Commission. On the interlocutory appeal, held, error in part. Because these documents do not contain highly secret business information they must appear on the public transcript, unless tendered to the Commission and obtained subject to an express stipulation that, if offered in evidence, they would be placed in camera. In order to support an in camera ruling, respondent must show that public disclosure would result in a serious, clearly-defined injury to its interests. H. P. Hood & Sons, TRADE REG. REP.1[ 29461 (FTC 1961).