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UNEMPLOYMENT LOOKS INEVITABLE FOR SESSIONS

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President Clinton will fire FBI Director William Sessions Monday if Sessions does not resign, administration officials said.

Clinton summoned Attorney General Janet Reno for an afternoon conference, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.A law enforcement source, also speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that Sessions was expected to accompany Reno to the meeting, suggesting the possibility that he still might resign at the last minute.

If Sessions has not resigned by then, Clinton will announce the firing in a joint appearance with Reno, the officials said.

The president is expected to name U.S. District Judge Louis Freeh of Manhattan as Sessions' successor on Tuesday, the officials said.

Clinton interviewed Freeh on Friday at the White House, and there really is no other candidate under consideration, the sources said.

Freeh is a 43-year-old former FBI agent and federal prosecutor.

Sessions' defiance over the weekend left Clinton with no alternative but to fire him, said the officials.

Although midway through his term, Sessions serves at the pleasure of the president.

Allegations of ethical abuses had clouded his ability to lead the bureau and transformed the respected former federal judge to a figure of controversy. He had 4 1/2 years left of his 10-year term.

Sessions had no immediate comment on Monday's developments, but his wife, Alice, said in an interview with The Associated Press Monday that the firing of her husband has "been in the realm of possibility all the way along."

"What's the difference" between resigning and being fired? she asked.

"Somebody asked him to come do a job 5 1/2 years ago because there was a job to be done," she said. "He gave up a secure federal judgeship with security for the rest of his life."

Sessions, whose tenure became tenuous in January when a Justice Department report accused him of ethical lapses, said over the weekend that he would not resign the post, in effect challenging Clinton to fire him.

The only way to get him out, Sessions said Sunday, is for "the president to say, `I want to replace you.' If he does it, I've gone all the way with the bureau and I know that I've done my job."

Clinton has not spoken with Sessions and did not plan to call him Monday, said the administration officials.

A government report said Sessions used government vehicles for personal trips, avoided taxes on chauffeured travel to and from work, had a taxpayer-funded fence improperly built at his home and used his position to receive a "sweetheart" deal on his home mortgage.