Reality Winner, the 25-year-old from Augusta, Georgia plans to plead not guilty following her arrest for allegedly leaking top secret NSA documents, RadarOnline.com has learned.
Winner was arrested on Saturday after investigators connected her to a leak of highly classified intelligence regarding Russian interference in the US Elections. The FBI have claimed that Winner was just one of six individuals to have printed the document, which later surfaced in the publication The Intercept.
According to to an affidavit obtained by Radar, FBI agent Justin Garrick interviewed Winner, who admitted to "intentionally identifying and printing the classified intelligence reporting at issue," as well as sending the document to the publication.
She is being charged by the federal government for "removing classified material from a government facility and mailing it to a news outlet."
Investigators say they were able to track Winner by observing that the document leaked to The Intercept appeared to be folded, which led them to believe it had been printed out. Using unique "microdots" in the printout, they were able to identify the source printer. In addition, they uncovered that Winner had been in email contact with the news outlet two months prior, to ask for one of the transcripts of a podcast they did regarding Russian leaks.
Winner also has a Twitter account under the alias Sara Winners — although she had a visible profile photo of herself – where she was repeatedly critical of President Trump. She follows 50 twitter accounts, among them Edward Snowden and Wikileaks.
Julian Assange — founder of WikiLeaks — released a statement calling for public support for Winner, saying she is a young woman "accused of courage in trying to help us know."
Winner's lawyer would not comment on his client and her connection to the leaks.
"There's not much to comment on right now as far as whether there is a connection between my client and Intercept," Nichols said. "I know that there is documents circulating on the Internet and everything else, but as far as concrete proof, we're just not at that stage, yet."
Winners works as a private contractor for Pluribus International Corp. She is an Air Force Veteran who speaks three other languages: Dari, Farsi, and Pashto.
She is expecting to be released on bond Thursday.
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