Rove Turns Down Plea Deal

From Holden:

A Plame Case update from Jason Leopold.

Although there have not been rumblings regarding Fitzgerald’s probe into the Plame leak since he met with the grand jury hearing evidence in the case more than a month ago, the sources said that Fitzgerald has been quietly building his case against Rove and has been interviewing witnesses, in some cases for the second and third time, who have provided him with information related to Rove’s role in the leak.

[snip]

[S]ources knowledgeable about the case against Rove say that he was offered a plea deal in December and that Luskin had twice met with Fitzgerald during that time to discuss Rove’s legal status. Rove turned down the plea deal, which would likely have required him to provide Fitzgerald with information against other officials who were involved in Plame’s outing as well as testifying against those people, the sources said.

Luskin would neither confirm nor deny that a meeting with Fitzgerald took place last month. “I am simply not going to comment on whether I was or wasn’t talking to Mr. Fitzgerald,” Luskin said. “I am not acknowledging that it did or didn’t happen, I am just saying that I have never commented about that before and I am not going to start doing that now.”

Rove has remained under intense scrutiny by Fitzgerald’s office for several months. During that time Fitzgerald, according to sources, has acquired evidence suggesting that Rove tried to cover up his role in the leak by withholding crucial facts from investigators and the grand jury, during his three previous appearances beginning in October 2003, about a conversation he had with Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper.