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October 2018


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Ex-FBI Agent Gets 4 Years in Prison for Leaking Classified Info To a Reporter

By Allan Lengel

Former FBI agent Terry J. Albury, 39, was sentenced in federal court Thursday in St. Paul, Minn., to four years in prison for leaking classified national defense information to a reporter who works for The Intercept.

“We are conducting perhaps the most aggressive campaign against leaks in Department history,” said Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a statement. “Crimes like the one committed by the defendant in this case will not be tolerated.”

Authorities alleged that Albury, who worked as an FBI agent in the Minneapolis field office,  disclosed from 2016 to 2017 national defense information, classified at the Secret level.

In a press release, authorities alleged:

Albury employed methods to avoid detection, including printing documents that he created by cutting and pasting portions of an original document into a new document so as to avoid leaving a record of having printed the original, classified document. Albury also accessed documents on a classified computer and took pictures of the computer screen in order to photograph certain classified documents. Those additional classified documents were recovered on an electronic storage device found during a search of his home.

The New York Times provided some context for the case:

By the time Terry J. Albury arrived in Minneapolis in 2012, about 11 years after he went to work for the F.B.I., he had grown increasingly convinced that agents were abusing their powers and discriminating against racial and religious minorities as they hunted for potential terrorists.

The son of an Ethiopian political refugee, Mr. Albury was the only African-American field agent assigned to a counterterrorism squad that scrutinized Minnesota’s Somali-American community. There, according to his lawyer, he became disillusioned about “widespread racist and xenophobic sentiments” in the bureau and “discriminatory practices and policies he observed and implemented.”

In 2016, Mr. Albury began photographing secret documents that described F.B.I. powers to recruit potential informants and identify potential extremists. On Thursday, he was sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty last year to unauthorized disclosures of national security secrets for sending several of the documents to The Intercept, which published the files with a series titled “The F.B.I.’s Secret Rules.”

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