Ex-CIA contractor pleads guilty to stealing classified data

- Mei 11, 2018

A former CIA contractor on Friday pleaded guilty for stealing classified information and then lying about it to investigators, the Justice Department said.

According to prosecutors, Reynaldo B. Regis spent a decade conducting unauthorized searches in classified CIA databases, then copying secret information into personal notebooks that he took home. Regis was assigned to the CIA from August 2006 and November 2016.

When investigators confronted him about the issue, Regis, 53, lied about his actions, according to court documents. A subsequent search of his home in Maryland uncovered approximately 60 notebooks filled with classified information, DOJ said.

Government officials did not address Regis’ motivation for shuttling the secret information out of the CIA.

Regis’ arrest adds to the growing list of government contractors who have been accused of pilfering classified information from intelligence agencies.


However, Regis' arrest is notable in that he worked for the CIA, not the National Security Agency, which has suffered more publicly from contractors pilfering sensitive materials.

In just the last two years, a contractor, Harold Martin III, agreed to plead guilty to stealing years worth of classified materials from the NSA, and another contractor, Reality Winner, told prosecutors that she used her pantyhose to smuggle out a report on Russian election hacking from an NSA office.

Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden also famously leaked documents detailing the agency's expansive spying apparatus.

Both the NSA and CIA have been hit by online leaks of their clandestine hacking tools, though.

A shadowy online group known as Shadow Brokers, who some experts suspect is a front for Russian intelligence, has occasionally posted the NSA’s cyber weapons online, while the activist site WikiLeaks last year published documents revealing the CIA’s apparent hacking arsenal.

Regis is only accused of removing classified information in physical notebooks, however, not hard drives drives containing secret files.

He could face up to six years in prison and will be sentenced on Sept. 21.

Josh Meyer contributed to this report.


 

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