But Was It a Crime?

North and Poindexter may soon face charges

When Oliver North, Robert McFarlane and John Poindexter appeared on Capitol Hill, the prospect of indictments loomed over them. Even before Poindexter testified last week, his lawyer announced that the rear admiral was already the target of a criminal investigation. If any of the central figures are in fact indicted, what charges are they likely to face?

In exchange for their testimony, North and Poindexter were promised that only evidence gathered independently of their congressional appearances could be used against them in criminal prosecutions. Independent Counsel Lawrence Walsh, who has been seeking such evidence, ordered key staffers not to watch the...

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