Former Senate Intel Committee aide James Wolfe has been arrested for leaking classified information as well as lying to the FBI. The FBI said that Wolfe lied repeatedly about his contacts with three reporters.
It is believed to be connected to the feds seizing records from NYT reporter Ali Watkins who was having an affair with Watkins. Some of the leaks supplied by Wolfe to Watkins occurred before she joined the Times.
The New York Times reported:
A former Senate Intelligence Committee aide was arrested Thursday in an investigation of classified information leaks where prosecutors also secretly seized years’ worth of a New York Times reporter’s phone and email records.
The former aide, James A. Wolfe, 57, was charged with lying repeatedly to investigators about his contacts with three reporters. According to the authorities, Mr. Wolfe made false statements to the F.B.I. about providing two of them with private information related to the committee’s work. They did not say whether it was classified.
Mr. Wolfe was slated to appear before a federal judge on Friday in Washington. Reached Thursday evening before his arrest, Mr. Wolfe declined to comment.
Mr. Wolfe’s case led to the first known instance of the Justice Department going after a reporter’s data under President Trump.
The resolution to supply the DOJ with the information they requested pertaining to his work for the committee was brought to the floor by Ohio Senator Rob Portman and was approved by unanimous consent. Unanimous consent is a way to speed up the process. If no one objects, it passes.
Fox News reported:
Portman, who is not a member of the intelligence committee, then made the standard request heard multiple times each day on the Senate floor: “I ask unanimous consent that the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to, and the motion to reconsider be considered made and laid upon the table with no intervening action or debate.”
No one objected, meaning the Senate approved the resolution.
The Senate often conducts business and approves measures via “unanimous consent.” That means no member objects to approving a given matter. Such issues are typically cleared with all 100 senators in advance. However, many aides and senior sources were unaware that the resolution was coming to the floor.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., and ranking member Mark Warner, D-Va., issued a joint statement Wednesday:
“As noted in the Senate Resolution, the Department of Justice has sought the assistance of the Committee in a pending investigation. The Committee is cooperating with the Department on this matter. Any questions about the investigation should be directed to the Department of Justice.”
Wolfe is the first leaker arrested under President Trump. Hopefully, he will be the first of many. Reporters and news organizations are nervous about the government seizing records but they have to remember it’s illegal to publish stolen classified information. Just ask Julian Assange.