Ex-CIA chief fined, given probation for divulging secrets

2015-04-24 09:17
David Petraeus (Picture: AP)

David Petraeus (Picture: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - Former CIA chief David Petraeus was given two years' probation and fined $100 000 on Thursday for providing classified secrets to his mistress, capping a dramatic fall from grace for the man feted for changing the course of the Iraq war.

Petraeus, a decorated four-star general and the most revered commander of his generation, pleaded guilty in a North Carolina court, avoiding a trial that would have cast an embarrassing light on details of his affair and his flouting of secrecy laws.

The Justice Department had previously said that Petraeus had acknowledged giving eight "black books", logs he kept as the US commander in Afghanistan to his lover and biographer, Paula Broadwell.

Petraeus "admitted to the unauthorized removal and retention of classified information and lying to the FBI and CIA about his possession and handling of classified information," acting US Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose said, in a statement following sentencing.

"Petraeus was sentenced to a two-year probationary term and was ordered to pay a $100 000 fine."

He had been expected to admit his guilt after signing a plea deal.

'Top Secret'

The five-by-eight inch notebooks were meant to serve as source material for Broadwell's book about the general, All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.

The notebooks included his daily schedule, classified notes, the identities of covert officers, details about US intelligence capabilities, code words, summaries of National Security Council sessions, and accounts of his meetings with President Barack Obama, according to court documents.

The black books contained "Top Secret" and "national defence information," it said.

An official Defence Department historian gathered up classified papers that Petraeus had collected while in uniform but the general never provided the notebooks to the historian as required.

Instead, Petraeus kept the notebooks in a rucksack, he told Broadwell in a conversation that she recorded.

"They are highly classified, some of them... I mean there's code word stuff in there," the general told her.

Petraeus later emailed Broadwell promising to give her the notebooks and personally delivered them to a residence where she was staying in Washington DC. He retrieved the black books a few days later and kept them at his home.

In October 2012, FBI agents questioned Petraeus at CIA headquarters while he was still director. The retired general told them he had never provided any secret information to Broadwell, a lie that he acknowledged in his plea deal.

Passing the sensitive information to Broadwell and then keeping the notebooks at his home clearly violated his legal obligation to safeguard classified information, authorities said.

None of the classified information appeared in Broadwell's book, which was published by Penguin in 2012.

Civil liberties advocates said the treatment of Petraeus reveals a double standard by government prosecutors, as more junior personnel who tried to blow the whistle on wrongdoing had faced much tougher treatment.

Read more on:    cia  |  us  |  security

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.