[Bloomberg] - Time Inc., seeking to keep its reporter out of jail and avoid fines, said it will hand over subpoenaed records to a prosecutor investigating the leak of a CIA operative's name after losing a U.S. Supreme Court appeal.
The magazine said its action "removes any justification" for jailing Time reporter Matthew Cooper, who has refused to identify sources for his stories on the leak.
Time Editor in Chief Norman Pearlstine said journalists are "not above the law," though New York Times Co. Chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. said he was "deeply disappointed" by Time's decision.
Cooper and Judith Miller, were looking into who leaked the name of Valerie Plame, a Central Intelligence Agency weapons expert, to newspaper columnist Robert Novak. The two reporters argued they were protected in refusing to reveal sources by the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment free-press guarantee.
It's a federal crime for U.S. officials who know the identity of covert agents to deliberately disclose their names. U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, special counsel in the investigation, declined comment through a spokesman.