Defense Intelligence Agency worker arrested, accused of leaking top secret information to journalists
Henry Kyle Frese, a 30-year-old counter-terrorism analyst, had a top secret clearance at the DIA and worked there as a contractor since January 2017 before becoming a full-time employee.
A criminal indictment made public on Wednesday says that one reporter wrote at least eight articles based on the compromised intelligence reports leaked by Frese.
Some of the classified intelligence reports Frese accessed were not connected to his job duties. In 2018, he allegedly offered top secret information about a foreign country’s weapons systems to a journalist who lived at his own Alexandria, Virginia address.
BREAKING: the feds have arrested a DIA employee in a leak case, and say he was in a relationship with one of the reporters he provided with information. https://t.co/ipY52E19Ip— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) October 9, 2019
“The unauthorized disclosure of TOP SECRET information could reasonably be expected to cause exceptionally grave harm to the national security of the United States,” the Justice Department said in a statement announcing the charges.
The first journalist allegedly contacted Frese via direct message on Twitter, asking if he would speak to another journalist a week after he leaked one of the intelligence reports. Frese apparently replied that he was “down” to help the second journalist if he would help the first one “progress.”
While the indictment itself does not identify the journalists or the outlet involved, multiple reporters have cited information from the court records and social media posts as evidence that one of them had to be Amanda Macias, national security correspondent for CNBC, with whom Frese is believed to have been involved romantically.
Can confirm based on public records and information contained in the court records: The journalist defense employee Henry K. Frese is accused of leaking classified information to is @amanda_m_macias, a CNBC national security reporter. The affiliated news organization is NBC News. https://t.co/UdWYab0VlD— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) October 9, 2019
If convicted of both counts of leaking, Frese could face a maximum of 10 years in prison.
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