Friday, March 02, 2007

Judge Walton: Testimony by Cheney may have helped Libby's acquittal prospects

A memorandum issued by Judge Reggie Walton implies that testimony by Vice President Dick Cheney may have helped former White House aide I. Lewis Libby's acquittal prospects, CNN reports. The jury was excused early today, but the trial will resume on Monday, as Libby faces a five-count indictment, which includes lying and obstruction of justice charges, related to the investigation of the "outing" of former CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson.

"The judge in the criminal trial of Lewis 'Scooter' Libby is making it clear for the historic record that he thought the defendant would take the stand, and that the presumption figured strongly into his decisions about classified material he would have allowed into evidence," CNN's Paul Courson reports.

According to CNN, Walton "also suggests the defense could have improved the prospects for acquittal of their client had they called Vice President Dick Cheney to the stand."

The jury was excused three hours early today after deliberating for eight days so far. One juror was dismissed for viewing or reading outside coverage of the case, so only eleven men and women remain on the jury.


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