US District Judge Reggie B. Walton said Thursday that he will release more than 150 letters he has received in relation to next week's sentencing of former vice-presidential aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby. While Libby opposed the release of the letters, saying that the writers did not intend for them to become public, various news sources argued that the letters were now matters of public record. Walton agreed that transparency is needed and will release the letters, minus addresses and other personal information, after Tuesday's sentencing.
Walton said that the letters run the full spectrum, with some urging leniency while others call for a substantial sentence. Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald recommended a sentence of two-and-a-half to three years, following Libby's March conviction of perjury and obstruction of justice related to the investigation of the Valerie Plame CIA leak case.