Criminal wrongdoing in Cheney's office?


Geraldine Sealey
February 6, 2004 1:34AM (UTC)

Citing federal law enforcement officials, UPI says there is "hard evidence" of possible criminal activity by two aides to Dick Cheney in the Valerie Plame case. (She's the CIA operative who had her cover blown last year after her husband publicly debunked the White House claim that Iraq had bought yellow cake uranium from Niger). "The investigation, which is continuing, could lead to indictments, a Justice Department official said. According to these sources, John Hannah and Cheney's chief of staff Lewis "Scooter" Libby were the two Cheney employees. 'We believe that Hannah was the major player in this,' one federal law enforcement officer said."

"Calls to the vice president's office were not returned. Hannah and Libby did not return calls. The strategy of the FBI is to make clear to Hannah 'that he faces a real possibility of doing jail time,' as a way to pressure him to name superiors, one federal law enforcement official said."

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Last fall, Salon's Eric Boehlert looked at reports that Libby could be the Plame leaker. At that time, a former senior CIA officer who served under President Bush's father said: "Libby is certainly suspect No. 1."

Newsweek called Scooter Libby "the most powerful Washington figure most people never heard of." And John Hannah has been in the news, too, recently, in a report that he was involved in Cheney's office bypassing U.S. intelligence agencies before the Iraq war to get "raw" intel reports directly from a State Department-funded Iraqi National Congress intel program.


Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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