Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Rove Dodges an Indictment

An AP story (here) reports that Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald informed Presidential aide Karl Rove that he would not be indicted in connection with his statements in the investigation of the leak of Valerie Plame's identity as a CIA agent.  Rove's attorney, Robert Luskin, stated that Fitzgerald informed him in the evening on June 12 that the prosecutor did not expect to seek an indictment of his client.  Rove testified before the grand jury five times, most recently in April 2006, to explain his contacts with the media about Plame and his knowledge (or lack thereof) regarding the leak of that information.  There had been widespread media speculation that Rove would be indicted on perjury, false statement, and obstruction of justice charges, similar to the indictment of I. Lewis Libby, the Vice President's former chief of staff.  With the possibility of charges gone, the next question will be whether Fitzgerald plans to call Rove as a witness at the Libby trial.  The two were in close contact during June and July 2003, when the administration sought to combat claims by former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, Plame's husband, about the lack of evidence of WMD in Iraq.  As an earlier post (here) about Korean prosecutors noted, it is helpful when a target of an investigation receives information that the government does not intend to pursue charges rather than be left hanging. (ph)

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