Libby Receives 30 Months in Prison in C.I.A. Leak Case
Photo: Charles Dharapak/Associated Press — Libby after sentencing

WASHINGTON, June 5 — I. Lewis Libby Jr., the former chief of staff to the vice president and one of the principal architects of President Bush’s foreign policy, was sentenced today to 30 months in prison for lying during a C.I.A. leak investigation that became part of a fierce debate over the war in Iraq.

The sentence ordered by Judge Reggie B. Walton of Federal District Court and his refusal so far to delay its implementation means that Mr. Libby may have to report to prison in about two months. That was expected to prompt Mr. Libby’s supporters to accelerate their calls for Mr. Bush to grant him a pardon, although a White House spokeswoman offered a discouraging view of that possibility today.

Mr. Libby, once one of the most powerful men in government and a principal planner of both Iraq wars, stood calmly in the well of the court as Judge Walton said he appreciated the defendant’s long service to the country, the record of which was put forward by his lawyers as an argument for a sentence of probation and no jail time.

But, the judge said, “People who occupy these types of positions, where they have the welfare and security of the nation in their hands, have a special obligation to not do anything that might create a problem.”

Judge Walton, who presided over the trial that ended in March with Mr. Libby’s conviction on four felony counts, said the evidence was overwhelming that Mr. Libby had obstructed justice and lied to a grand jury and F.B.I. agents investigating the disclosure of the identity of a Central Intelligence Agency operative, Valerie Wilson.

Get used to making that face mate…
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