Aug. 27, 2004 wire reports

ATLANTA -- Baltimore Ravens running back Jamal Lewis did not appear at his arraignment Friday, but his lawyers entered a not guilty plea on charges in an expanded drug conspiracy indictment.

Lawyers for Lewis and co-defendant Angelo Jackson showed up 40 minutes before the morning hearing was to begin and asked the court to start early, said Andy Burns, courtroom deputy to U.S. Magistrate Judge Gerrilyn G. Brill. Jackson appeared and pleaded not guilty.

Lewis, already facing federal drug conspiracy charges issued in February, was hit Aug. 17 with an extra charge of attempting to possess cocaine.

The charge was included in a superseding indictment, a common move in complicated cases where the government refines its original accusations. Jackson was already facing the attempted cocaine possession charge.

Lewis, 24, is accused of trying to broker a cocaine deal in the summer of 2000 for Jackson, 26. The two men grew up in the same area of Atlanta. Their trial is set for Nov. 1.

The Associated Press News Service

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