Image: Libby
Pablo Martinez Monsivais  /  AP
I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby
NBC News
updated 2/20/2007 12:16:46 AM ET 2007-02-20T05:16:46

Prosecutors and defense attorneys in the trial of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby will make their final arguments to the jury on Tuesday.

Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald has presented a detailed case to support charges of perjury and obstruction of justice by presenting several witnesses whose testimony conflicts with Libby's sworn statements to FBI investigators and a grand jury.

Defense attorneys Ted Well, along with William Jeffress, put on a truncated defense last week. The bulk of their strategy was based on discrediting Fitzgerald's witnesses during cross-examination. Neither Libby nor his former boss Vice President Dick Cheney was called to testify.

The prosecution has the burden of convincing the jurors, beyond a reasonable doubt, of Libby's guilt.

Peter Zeidenberg, a Justice Department prosecutor, will begin the summation case for the government Tuesday morning. He will be followed by Wells.

As is customary in federal criminal trials, the prosecutors will have the last word. The prosecution's rebuttal will be presented by Fitzgerald.

Each side will have a total of three hours to present their closing statements.

Wells and Fitzgerald have emerged as the leading opponents in scores of arguments over legal issues before presiding U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton.

Libby, Cheney's former chief of staff, faces five felony charges for allegedly lying during an investigation of who leaked to reporters the name of a CIA operative, Valerie Plame Wilson, the wife of former ambassador Joseph Wilson, a critic of the Bush administration's pre-war intelligence.

Libby is charged with two counts of making false statements to FBI agents, two counts of perjury before a grand jury and one count of obstructing the CIA leak investigation.

Neither Libby, nor anyone else, is charged with the leak of Plame's name itself. Judge Walton has prevented any testimony as to whether Plame was a covert classified CIA officer at the time her name was revealed to reporters in 2003.

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