Scooter Libby Judge to Release Sentencing Letters to Media

Judge Reggie Walton ruled today that following Scooter "I. Lewis" Libby's sentencing, he will release the more than 150 sentencing letters received in the case, both those asking for leniency and those asking for a harsh sentence.

The order is here (pdf).

Personal information such as home addresses and phone numbers will be redacted from the letters.

The Judge gave Libby's lawyers a little wiggle room. If they think additional personal information should be redacted from specific letters, they have until June 4 to identify that information in an ex parte submission to the court. The Judge says that he will only consider those further redactions that contain "plainly sensitive or confidential" information.

There's a sentence in the Order that indicates to me the Judge thinks the charges Libby was convicted of are quite serious. He writes that the number of letters received are indicative not only of the high public interest in the case but "of the weightiness of the underlying charges."

Team Libby can't be happy with that sentence.

Update: Marcy weighs in.

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    Smile (none / 0) (#1)
    by scribe on Thu May 31, 2007 at 02:03:42 PM EST
    and that's about all I have to say about this.

    Someone noted over at Marcy's place their surprise that only 150 people had written Walton re Scooter.

    Short note - I would have written Walton urging severe sentencing but for the fact that this administration is inclined to exact retribution on those who stand up (or speak up) against it and I have no need to deal with that, too.

    current gov. officials (none / 0) (#2)
    by Doh on Fri Jun 01, 2007 at 08:55:50 AM EST

    Can you say anything about the propriety or policies regarding current US officials sending such letters?  I think I saw somewhere a statement that such letters are generally discouraged because they appear to undercut the government's official position, as expressed by the prosecution, but I haven't seen much more than that.  I'd be curious if there is a policy or practice against such letters, and how well-established it is.

    Libby Letters (none / 0) (#3)
    by kwgrlup on Tue Jun 05, 2007 at 02:18:17 PM EST
    i can't wait to see what Fred (Scooter Defense Fund) Thompson had to say, after what he had to say about Watergate all those years ago. i find it AMAZING that anyone would support him for a prez run if they took any time at all to read up on his past political involvement. His excuses for that admin's criminal behavior is putrid. Oh! i keep forgetting WHO these creatures REALLY are...