Another Reporter Called to Give Up Sources

By Justin Rood

May 30, 2008 1:52pm

Another journalist is being told by a court he must reveal his sources.

A federal judge in California has called Washington Times newspaper reporter William Gertz to identify the confidential sources who told him about an investigation into alleged Chinese spying, the New York Sun reported Friday.

Judge Cormac Carney subpoenaed Gertz to appear June 13 in his Santa Ana courtroom and name the people who told him that criminal charges were expected to be filed against engineer Chi Mak and his relatives. THe move came after a year-long FBI investigation to identify Gertz’s sources.

Chi Mak was convicted last year of being an unregistered agent for China and was recently sentenced to 24 years in prison. His wife and three other relatives pled guilty to related charges.

Gertz’s is the third high-profile case to be weighed while Congress debates the merits of a federal shield law to protect reporters from court efforts to identify their sources.

USA Today reporter Toni Locy is fighting court-sanctioned fines and the threat of imprisonment for refusing to disclose her sources for reporting that former Army scientist Steven Hatfill was a "person of interest" to FBI agents investigating anthrax-laced letters mailed to congressional offices in 2001.

And New York Times reporter James Risen is fighting a January grand jury subpoena for the names of the confidential sources who provided information about the CIA for his book, "State of War."

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