Friday, August 12, 2005

Plame and the law

A former federal prosecutor (and apparently, a "non-pundit") has a nonethless intriguing piece in the LAT today. The upshot? Don't be so fast in thinking someone won't be indicted under the Intelligence Identities Protection Act in the Plame-leak case.

PUNDITS RIGHT, left and center have reached a rare unanimous verdict about one aspect of the grand jury investigation into the Valerie Plame leak: They've decided that no charges can be brought under the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 because it imposes an impossibly high standard. Christopher Hitchens, for instance, described the 1982 act as a "silly law" that requires that "you knowingly wish to expose the cover of a CIA officer who you understand may be harmed as a result." Numerous other columnists have nodded their heads smugly in agreement.

Shocking as it may seem, however, the pundits are wrong, and their casual summaries of the requirements of the 1982 statute betray a fundamental misunderstanding regarding proof of criminal intent.

It's pretty good. Read it all.

Permalink posted by Jonathan : 9:34 AM

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