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Cheney says he may testify in Libby case, claims declassifying power

[JURIST] In an interview [transcript] on the Fox News Channel Wednesday, US Vice President Dick Cheney [official profile] said that while he may be called as a witness [Reuters report] in the CIA leak case [JURIST news archive] and therefore could not comment specifically on it, he does have authority under executive order to declassify government secrets. The comment has increased speculation that Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [CBS profile], could try to shift blame to him as part of his defense. Libby has been charged [PDF indictment; JURIST report] with obstruction of justice, making a false statement and perjury in connection with the investigation into the leak of former CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity.

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald [official website] last week filed court documents that show that Libby testified to a federal grand jury that he had been authorized by 'superiors' to leak intelligence information [JURIST report]. Libby's lawyers have so far denied reports that they will try to shift blame to anyone else. AP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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