Defense Intel Agency Employee Accused of Leaking Secrets to Journo Girlfriend

October 9, 2019 by Dan McCue
The Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building. (Photo by Dan McCue)

WASHINGTON – A Defense Intelligence Agency employee from Alexandria, Virginia was arrested Wednesday morning for allegedly leaking classified information to his journalist girlfriend and a second journalist.

Henry Kyle Frese, who is identified in court documents as a counterterrorism analyst, was arrested when he showed up for work in Reston, Va.

John Demers, assistant attorney general for national security, said the 30-year-old Frese has been indicted on two counts of willful transmission of national defense information to persons not entitled to receive it.

“Frese was caught red-handed disclosing sensitive national security information for personal gain,” Demers said.

“Frese betrayed the trust placed in him by the American people — a betrayal that risked harming the national security of this country,” he continued. “This is one of six unauthorized disclosure cases the Department has charged in just over two years, and we will continue in our efforts to punish and deter this behavior.”

In an affidavit filed in the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Special Agent Donny Kim says that over the past two years, Frese, who had a Top Secret security clearance, routinely accessed classified intelligence reports — some of which were unrelated to his duties — and gave a journalist information on “a foreign country’s weapons systems.”

According to prosecutors, Frese would search a classified government computer system for terms in a report, and once he found it, he would speak with his girlfriend to tell her what it contained.

About half an hour later, they say, a news article on the topic was published based on the top secret information.

At one point, Frese’s girlfriend asked if he would speak with another journalist. He agreed because he wanted to help advance his girlfriend’s career, the court documents say.

The second journalist also published articles based on the information.

Investigators say they caught Frese through his use of government computer systems and his cellphone.

“Henry Kyle Frese was entrusted with top secret information related to the national defense of our country,” G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, said at a news conference Wednesday afternoon.

“Frese allegedly violated that trust, the oath he swore to uphold, and is charged with engaging in dastardly and felonious conduct at the expense of our country,” Terwilliger added.

The Justice Department has not released the name of the journalists involved or their news outlets.

Asked by a reporter whether the DOJ intended to send a message to journalists, Terwilliger said the message the department wants to send is intended for only one audience.

“The Justice Department is trying to send a message to leakers — that if you leak information and you betray your oath and you unilaterally provide information, you are going to be prosecuted,” he said.

Frese is expected to appear in court on Thursday. If convicted on both counts, he faces a possible sentence of 20 years in prison.

Law

Atlanta-Based Court Considers School’s Transgender Bathroom Policy Civil Rights
Atlanta-Based Court Considers School’s Transgender Bathroom Policy

ATLANTA — Judges on the federal appeals court in Atlanta on Thursday peppered lawyers with questions in a case that could set an important precedent for bathroom access by transgender high school students. Two judges, both members of the more liberal wing of the 11th U.S.... Read More

Appeals Court Says Congress Entitled to Trump Bank Records Law
Appeals Court Says Congress Entitled to Trump Bank Records
December 4, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON  — The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday ruled Congress is entitled to review President Donald Trump's banking records as it investigates possible foreign influence in U.S. elections, violations of the emoluments clause and other issues. The three-judge 2nd Circuit panel said Congress... Read More

States Appeal Judge’s Decision to Toss Local Tax Deductions Lawsuit Litigation
States Appeal Judge’s Decision to Toss Local Tax Deductions Lawsuit
December 3, 2019
by Tom Ramstack

WASHINGTON - Four states are appealing a federal judge’s September dismissal of their lawsuit challenging federal authority to limit state and local tax deductions. In a filing before the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, attorneys for the states argue the cap unconstitutionally interferes with their... Read More

Trump Lawyers Ask Supreme Court to Let Federal Executions Resume Criminal Justice
Trump Lawyers Ask Supreme Court to Let Federal Executions Resume

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s administration asked the U.S. Supreme Court to clear the federal government to resume executions as soon as next week. The emergency filing on Monday urged the court to lift a hold that a trial judge placed on the federal death penalty... Read More

Impeachment is Latest Boon for Washington Lawyers In The News
Impeachment is Latest Boon for Washington Lawyers

WASHINGTON — Michael Volkov ran his client, Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, through a “murder board” in preparation for his recent testimony under the glare of TV lights in the House impeachment hearings. Over more than a dozen intense days, Volkov and Vindman reviewed facts, dates and... Read More

House Oversight Panel Sues Barr, Ross to Obtain Census Documents Litigation
House Oversight Panel Sues Barr, Ross to Obtain Census Documents

WASHINGTON — A House committee on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to get documents on the administration’s unsuccessful attempt to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census. President Donald Trump asserted executive privilege in June to... Read More

Straight From The Well
scroll top