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No Announcement Today in CIA Leak Probe
No Announcement Today in CIA Leak ProbeSpokesman for Prosecutor in CIA Leak Says No Public Announcement Will Be Made Before Tomorrow
By PETE YOST Associated Press Writer
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON Oct 27, 2005 — Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald huddled with his legal team Thursday as two key White House aides awaited their fate in the CIA leak probe.
A spokesman for the prosecutor said there would be no public announcements Thursday. The term of the grand jury that could bring indictments expires Friday.
The White House braced for the possibility that Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, could become a criminal defendant by week's end. Bush's top political adviser, Karl Rove, remained in jeopardy of being charged with false statements.
Libby and Rove arrived for work at the White House Thursday as usual. Rove attended the daily meeting of the senior staff, but Libby did not and was said to be in a security briefing. Libby misses senior staff about half the time because of intelligence briefings and other issues on Cheney's schedule, an official said.
Separately, Randall Samborn, a spokesman for Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald, said there would be no announcements in the probe on Thursday.
Rove's legal team made contingency plans, consulting with former Justice Department official Mark Corallo about what defenses could be mounted in court and in public.
Fitzgerald met with Rove attorney Robert Luskin at a private law firm office Tuesday, heightening White House fears for Rove's future.
In 2003, eight days after former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson accused the Bush administration of twisting prewar intelligence to exaggerate the Iraqi threat, columnist Robert Novak disclosed the identity of Wilson's wife, covert CIA officer Valerie Plame.
After checking with Rove and Libby, the White House categorically denied that either aide was involved in leaking Plame's identity.
Fitzgerald was appointed nearly two years ago to determine whether any presidential aides violated a federal law that prohibits the intentional unmasking of an undercover CIA officer.
The prosecutor also has discussed other charges with defense lawyers in recent weeks, including false statements, obstruction of justice and mishandling of classified information.