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Title VI of the Ethics in Government Act (Title VI or the Act), 28 U. S. C. §§ 591-599 (1982 ed., Supp. V), allows for the appointment of an 'independent counsel' to investigate and, if appropriate, prosecute certain high ranking Government officials for violations of federal criminal laws. The Act was first enacted by Congress in 1978, Pub. L. 95-521, 92 Stat. 1867, and has been twice reenacted, with amendments. See Pub. L. 97-409, 96 Stat. 2039; Pub. L. 100-191, 101 Stat. 1293. The current version of the statute states that, with certain exceptions, it shall 'cease to be effective five years after the date of the enactment of the Independent Counsel Reauthorization Act of 1987.' 28 U. S. C. § 599 (1982 ed., Supp. V). Under 28 U. S. C. § 591(a) (1982 ed., Supp. V), the statute applies to violations of 'any Federal criminal law other than a violation classified as a Class B or C misdemeanor or an infraction.' See also § 591(c) ('any Federal criminal law other than a violation classified as a Class B or C misdemeanor or an infraction'). Section 591(b) sets forth the individuals who may be the target of an investigation ...

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