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Published: Fri, May 18, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Ex-CIA employee in leak probe 'deeply saddened'

Ex-CIA employee in leak probe 'deeply saddened'

The Federal Bureau of Investigation suspects that a former Central Intelligence Agency employee separately charged with possessing child pornography had a role in the unauthorized release of a trove of CIA hacking tools to the WikiLeaks website a year ago, according to a court transcript.

The archive of files detailed the CIA's use of hacking tools, including malware to take over iPhones and turn smart television sets into surveillance devices.

A suspect in the case of the CIA Vault 7 leak that was published by WikiLeaks past year has been arrested - but not on charges of leaking classified documents. Schulte says the server is accessible by at least 50 other people, and perhaps as many as 100.

Following the filing of the August charges, Schulte was told not to leave New York City and to stay off computers.

Schulte was released on bail last September, contingent on his not using a computer.

So how did Schulte wind up facing charges relating to child pornography? In March 2017, the officials were already smarting from an unprecedented leak of National Security Agency software exploits seven months earlier by a mysterious group calling itself the Shadow Brokers. He was jailed in December for failing to meet these conditions and has been held in the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan. He also said a coincidentally planned vacation with his brother made authorities wrongly believe he was fleeing the country.

He also said that because of 'unfortunate circumstances the Federal Bureau of Investigation ultimately made the snap judgement that (he) was guilty of the leaks and targeted (him)'.

Following the search, agents stopped Schulte from travelling to Mexico for a holiday, confiscating his passport. However, even after months of investigation, prosecutors have not been able to collect enough evidence to actually bring charges against Schulte.

Why prosecutors haven't filed charges against Schulte remains unclear.

Years before Mr. Schulte allegedly supplied WikiLeaks with top-secret Central Intelligence Agency tools, the pedbsktbll Twitter account blasted Ms. Manning for giving classified State and Defense Department documents to the same website.

"This case has been dragging since August 2017", Shroff told the NYT in an interview. Schulte's attorneys have said that Tor is used for all kinds of communications and have maintained that he played no role in the Vault 7 leaks. "The government should be required to indict so Mr Schulte has the opportunity to defend himself".

Assistant Federal Defender Sabrina Shroff commented Tuesday about 29-year-old Joshua Adam Schulte after a prosecutor revealed last week that the government hoped a grand jury would return charges in about 45 days. He then left the intelligence community in 2016 and started working in the private sector. Since then, he has posted a series of essays under a pseudonym on Facebook criticising the U.S. justice system.

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