Federal contractor arrested after NSA document published on news site

The Department of Justice has charged a government contractor in Georgia with leaking classified information to a news outlet, according to a statement from the department.

The woman, Reality Leigh Winner, 25, was arrested by the FBI at her home on Saturday and appeared in federal court on Monday, the DOJ said.

The complaint filed against Winner, a contractor with the Pluribus International Corporation who had top-secret security clearances, claims she printed a document with classified intelligence information and mailed it to an online news outlet in early May. 

The document, which contained information about Russian interference in the U.S. election, was published online by The Intercept barely an hour before Winner’s arrest, NBC reported. 

Sources confirmed to NBC News that Winner was the person behind the leak of the document.

“Exceptional law enforcement efforts allowed us quickly to identify and arrest the defendant,” said Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein in the DOJ statement.

“Releasing classified material without authorization threatens our nation’s security and undermines public faith in government. People who are trusted with classified information and pledge to protect it must be held accountable when they violate that obligation.”

The DOJ's statement also said Winner, who is charged with "removing classified material from a government facility and mailing it to a news outlet," admitted to leaking the document. 

© 2017 TEGNA MEDIA


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