US supreme court refuses to hear appeal by former CIA operative

(GUARDIAN)   A lawsuit by former CIA operative Valerie Plame against former Bush administration officials will not be revived by the US supreme court.

Valerie Plame

Valerie Plame

Last year a lower court tossed out the lawsuit filed by Plame and her husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson, which accused Dick Cheney and former top Bush officials of leaking Plame’s identity to the media in 2003. Wilson and Plame argued the move violated their constitutional rights.

The US court of appeals said the lawsuit didn’t meet legal standards for constitutional claims because part of the suit is based on alleged violations of the Privacy Act, a law that does not cover the president or the vice-president’s offices.

Former Bush officials Karl Rove, I Lewis “Scooter” Libby and Richard Armitage were named in the lawsuit. Armitage admitted to being the source of a column by conservative writer Robert Novak that identified Plame as a CIA operative. The column appeared shortly after Wilson wrote an opinion piece in the New York Times questioning a claim by Bush that Niger sold uranium yellowcake to Iraq. Rove also talked to the media about Plame.

Libby was convicted of obstruction of justice and lying to the FBI as a result of an investigation triggered by the leak. George Bush commuted Libby’s sentence before the former aide served time in prison.

Today’s decision by the supreme court effectively ends any legal manoeuvres Plame can pursue against the Bush administration.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/deadlineusa/2009/jun/22/valerie-plame-supreme-court-lawsuit

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