Official: Trump expected to pardon Scooter Libby

President Donald Trump is expected to grant a pardon to Scooter Libby, who was the chief of staff to then-Vice President Dick Cheney, a White House official said.

Justice Department spokesman Ian Prior confirmed Friday to CNN that there is no current petition seeking a pardon on file with the DOJ’s Office of Pardon Attorney.

The White House is not required to consult with the office that typically handles most clemency petitions, but the majority of cases operate that way.

Libby had been convicted of perjury in 2007 in the investigation into who leaked the identity of CIA officer Valerie Plame.

Four months after Libby’s conviction, President George W. Bush commuted the 30-month sentence but would not grant a pardon.

News of the expected pardon was previously reported by ABC News.

Libby was convicted in a case headed up by special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald, who was named by then-Deputy Attorney General James Comey. Thursday’s pardon news came hours after excerpts surfaced from an explosive tell-all book by Comey that harshly criticizes the President. Comey was fired as FBI director by Trump last year.

Trump used his pardon authority last year when he pardoned Joe Arpaio, a controversial sheriff in Arizona who had been convicted of criminal contempt related to his hard-line tactics going after undocumented immigrants.

In the first pardon, Trump did not follow his predecessors’ practice of consulting with lawyers at the Justice Department before announcing his decision.