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Sources: Prosecutor focusing on Rove

Fitzgerald looking into possible perjury in CIA leaks probe



Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
Joe Wilson
Dick Cheney

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is focusing his investigation into the leak of a CIA operative's identity on whether White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove committed perjury, two lawyers involved in the case told CNN.

Fitzgerald is expected to announce Friday the results of his investigation and whether he has come up with indictments, a source said.

The source said Fitzgerald summarized his case before the grand jury Wednesday and met with the U.S. District Court's chief justice afterward for about 45 minutes. (Watch how the leak affected the CIA and its operatives -- 2:32)

The details of what Fitzgerald and District Court Judge Thomas Hogan discussed were not immediately disclosed.

The grand jury session came two days before its term is set to expire Friday. While Fitzgerald could ask for more time for the investigation, most legal experts CNN talked to do not think he will ask for an extension.

Rove testified before the grand jury four times, most recently on October 14.

Fitzgerald's investigation into the leak of Valerie Plame's name to reporters has gripped Washington and kept the White House tight-lipped and on edge.

Two aides close to President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney -- Rove, Bush's longtime political adviser, and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Cheney's chief of staff -- have been entangled in the two-year-old investigation.

Fitzgerald, the U.S. attorney in Chicago, was appointed as a special prosecutor to investigate whether anyone in the Bush administration deliberately leaked the name of Plame, a CIA operative, to retaliate against her husband, Joseph Wilson. (Fitzgerald profile)

Intentionally disclosing the identity of a CIA operative can be a federal crime.

Plame and her husband, a retired State Department diplomat, have accused Bush administration officials of deliberately leaking her identity to the media to retaliate against Wilson after he published an opinion piece in The New York Times.

The July 2003 article cast doubt on a key assertion in the Bush administration's arguments for war with Iraq -- that Iraq had sought to purchase uranium in Africa for a suspected nuclear weapons program.

Wilson, who was acting ambassador to Iraq before the 1991 Persian Gulf War, said the CIA sent him to Niger, in central Africa, to investigate the uranium claim in February 2002 and that he found no evidence such a transaction occurred and it was unlikely it could have. (Full story)

Days after Wilson's article was published, Plame's identity was revealed in a piece by syndicated columnist and longtime CNN contributor Robert Novak.

The New York Times reported Tuesday that notes of a conversation between Cheney and Libby indicate that Libby first learned about Plame from the vice president -- and that Cheney got the information from then-CIA Director George Tenet.

However, the Times reported that the notes do not indicate that Cheney or Libby knew Plame was undercover and her identity protected by the federal law.

The Times said lawyers involved in the case described the contents of the notes to the newspaper.

About five months after the purported conversation with Libby, Cheney told NBC's "Meet The Press" that he did not know Wilson and had "no idea" who enlisted him to go to Africa.

Wilson has charged administration officials were displeased with his conclusion that there was no evidence to substantiate any transactions between Iraq and Niger

CNN's Kelli Arena contributed to this report

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