A former National Security Agency contractor accused of stealing thousands of pages of classified documents was indicted on Wednesday by a federal grand jury.
Herald Thomas Martin III, 52, faces 20 counts of “willful retention of national defense information,” according to a statement released by the Justice Department following the return of the indictment.
Martin worked at the NSA between 2012 and 2015 while he was employed by the consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. According to the indictment, Martin stole and retained a large quantity of highly classified information starting as early as 1996, and continuing until his arrest last August.
“As a private contractor who worked on classified programs at various U.S. government agencies, the defendant was entrusted with access to sensitive government materials,” acting Assistant Attorney General Mary McCord said in the Justice Department’s statement. “Martin allegedly violated the trust our nation put in him by stealing and retaining classified documents and other material relating to the national defense.”
In October, the government issued charges against Martin for felony theft of government property, and unauthorized removal and misdemeanor retention of classified materials. Wednesday’s indictment alleges willful retention of national defense information, a violation of the Espionage Act.
Martin has been detained since his arrest in August. His first court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday.
H/T: The Hill
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