A former Army buddy of bombing suspect Timothy McVeigh has reportedly made a deal with prosecutors to plead guilty to lesser charges in exchange for testifying for the government.
Michael Fortier, of Kingman, Ariz., will admit he took part in the plot to bomb the Oklahoma City federal building and will testify against McVeigh, according to media reports Tuesday.
The grand jury investigating the bombing is under a Friday deadline to indict McVeigh and Terry Nichols, the only two charged in the April 19 terrorist attack that killed 168 people and injured more than 500.
Fortier will reportedly plead guilty to at least three charges: lying to a federal agent, knowing about a felony but doing nothing to stop it, and interstate transportation of stolen weapons.
Under federal law, anyone who knowingly aids in the commission of a crime can be charged as a principal in that crime, which could have given prosecutors the threat of the death penalty to hold over Fortier’s head.
Fortier’s attorney, Michael McGuire, did not immediately return phone calls. Fortier and McGuire were at Tinker Air Force Base, where the grand jury is deliberating, on Tuesday, but it wasn’t known if Fortier testified.