NSA Official Who Leaked Wiretap Program Details to Reporter Indicted
Thomas A. Drake, a high level official with the National Security Agency, had been indicted in Maryland for making false statements and obstruction of justice into the investigation of who leaked details of Bush's warrantless NSA surveillance program to a newspaper in 2006 and 2007.
A federal grand jury in Maryland indicted Drake on five counts of retaining classified information without authorization, including four e-mails and one document copying classified information. He also was charged on one count of obstructing justice and four counts of making false statements to the FBI. The maximum prison terms for those charges range from five to 20 years.
From the DOJ press release: [More...]
The indictment alleges that between approximately February 2006 and November 2007, a newspaper reporter published a series of articles about the NSA. The indictment alleges that Drake served as a source for many of those articles, including articles that contained classified information. The indictment also alleges that Drake took a series of steps to facilitate the provision of this information to the reporter, including:
* exchanging hundreds of e-mails with and meeting with the reporter;
* researching stories for the reporter to write in the future by e-mailing unwitting NSA employees and accessing classified and unclassified documents on classified NSA networks;
* copying and pasting classified and unclassified information from NSA documents into untitled word processing documents which, when printed, had the classification markings removed;
* printing both classified and unclassified documents, bringing them to his home, and retaining them there without authority;
* scanning and emailing electronic copies of classified and unclassified documents to the reporter from his home computer; and
* reviewing, commenting on, and editing drafts of the reporter’s articles.
Via the Washington Post article linked above, Drake's public defender says:
An interesting sidenote: The court docket shows Drake applied for and was granted the public defender as his attorney on April 5, prior to being indicted. The order states:
"Mr. Drake loves his country. He's very disappointed that criminal charges were brought and we were not able to resolve this matter in another way," Wyda said. "This is a process and we now look forward to the next step in this process and litigating these matters in a public courtroom."
"ORDER APPOINTING COUNSEL FOR INDIVIDUAL NOT A NAMED DEFENDANT"
The above entitled individual having been found to be financially unable to obtain counsel and may be entitled to appointment of counsel under the Criminal Justice Act.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, this 5th day of April, 2010, that the Federal Public Defender for the District of Maryland is hereby appointed to represent the individual, Thomas A. Drake.
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