It looks like the Chronicle's two BALCO reporters, Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams, will not be joining Josh Wolf in prison as they're no longer on the hook. The main reason being the source who they were protecting finally came forward to admit that that he was the leak. The person in question was the lawyer for Victor Conte and BALCO vice president James Valente, Troy Ellerman. Ellerman is being charged for handing court transcripts over to Fainaru-Wade and Wiliams. In a perfectly oily move that gives lawyers the reputation they have (sorry SFist Rita!), Ellerman was busy complaining to the judge about leaks all the while being the one who was leaking. Of course, it could have all been his master plan. After all, who would suspect the guy complaining the most about leaks?
The FBI uncovered who the mole was when a Private Eye Victor Conte hired told the FBI that he suspected Ellerman was the leaker. The PI, Larry McCormack, had some history with Ellerman that went back to the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, and said he did it mainly because he thought what Ellerman was doing was wrong.
We have to admit feeling ambivalent about all this. On the one hand, we believe in freedom of the press and all that. On the other hand, the whole point of a Grand Jury is that it's all secret. If everything that happens in a Grand Jury were leaked, then nobody would actually say anything to the Grand Jury, thus rendering it pretty much useless. Luckily, now that it's all resolved, we no longer have to ponder such ethical dilemmas, freeing up all that mental capacity to try and figure out last night's episode of "Lost"