President Trump’s Justice Department has arrested and charged former intelligence analyst Daniel Everette Hale for allegedly sharing classified national security information with a reporter. Hale is at least the sixth alleged journalistic source charged by the Trump administration in just over two years in office. The Justice Department has previously indicated dozens more leak investigations are ongoing.
Hale is accused of leaking information on drone warfare — an issue of enormous public interest value — with a reporter, which news reports suggest may be Jeremy Scahill of The Intercept. If convicted, Hale could face up to 50 years in prison.
Freedom of the Press Foundation Executive Director Trevor Timm issued the following statement:
“Prosecuting journalistic sources chills investigative reporting and poses an enormous threat to whistleblowers, press freedom rights, and the public’s right to know. Whistleblowers should be lauded for their courage, not charged with felonies and imprisoned. The Trump administration is on pace to shatter the Obama administration’s record for the number of prosecutions of alleged sources, and everyone who cares about brave national security reporting should loudly condemn Hale’s arrest.”
Freedom of the Press Foundation will have more on this case as it unfolds.