Convicted leakerPresident Biden requested the pardon in a petition filed Wednesday. Winner was an Air Force veteran who was acting as a contractor for the National Security Agency when she leaked a top-secret document to The Intercept in 2017 showing Russian interference in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election through a phishing campaign targeting election officials. .
Weiner was tracked down by the FBI, at the request of the National Security Agency, and arrested in June 2017. She was arraigned in court just hours after The Intercept’s story surfaced online, along with a redacted copy of the document.
later winnerfor breaching the Espionage Act and spent four years behind bars, before completing her sentence by releasing her home under supervision. She is currently serving three years of supervised release.
In her petition to the Justice Department’s Office of Pardons, Weiner wrote, “Forgiveness is never earned, grace is not worthy, and I have pleaded guilty to the crime I intentionally committed. However, I have been denied the opportunity to explain the reasons for my actions to the jury, and so I would like to offer this explanation.” Here in the hope that forgiveness and grace will find me through understanding.”
Winner described why she leaked the document in a . formatLast year after her release from prison.
“I kept thinking, ‘Oh my God, someone needs to step forward and correct this. Somebody. “
“You knew it was stamped ‘top secret,'” reporter Scott Bailey said. ‘You knew what that meant.’
Weiner replied, “I knew it. I knew it was a secret.” “But I also knew that I had pledged to serve the American people. At the time, I felt like they had lost their way.”
“People should have known that a hostile foreign government had already committed serious abuses in our election infrastructure,” Weiner said in her pardon petition. “My breach did not harm any human assets, or endanger our troops or allies,” she said while deliberately violating her oath.
Weiner said she served a 63-month prison sentence, which at the time was the longest sentence ever given to a civilian for leaking classified information to the press.
Wiener’s attorney has been candid in her letter to the Justice Department’s pardon attorney.
“[T]Alison Granter wrote that the fact that she was given the longest sentence ever at the time for a civilian who disclosed classified information to the press was undoubtedly a political choice made to appease former President Trump.
“It was an option to protect a hostile foreign government that sought to undermine our founding democratic structure by demonizing Americans who briefed the public on the details of the attack.”
There is usually a five-year waiting period for a pardon request, but Grenter asked for it to be waived “because it was proven that the former president had no respect for our democratic institutions and rules and was willing to sabotage, manipulate and conceal the truth. Now is the time to forgive those who gave us the truth when we needed it.” to know it.”
While the Justice Department was investigating and accusing Wiener of violating the Espionage Act, another branch of the federal government, the US Election Assistance Commission, sent an alert to state and local election officials using the information Wiener leaked to warn of a Russian email phishing campaign.