[JURIST] Defense lawyers for I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby [defense profile; JURIST news archive] have requested a one-month delay in the trial, which would push the scheduled start date back to February 12, 2007. Lead defense attorney Theodore V. Wells Jr. requested the delay to accommodate a securities fraud trial he believes will take longer than previously expected. Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald [official website] said he would consent to the delay unless the securities trial is pushed back, and US District Judge Reggie B. Walton will soon decide whether to grant the request.
Libby has pleaded not guilty [JURIST report] to obstruction of justice and perjury charges [PDF indictment; JURIST report] in connection with the investigation into the leak of covert CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity to the media. Speculation that President Bush will pardon Libby [JURIST report] has increased following the revelation earlier this month that Karl Rove [official profile], Bush's top political advisor, will not face criminal charges [JURIST report] in the three-year investigation. AP has more.