Joshua Schulte, who orchestrated the greatest CIA leak, was sentenced to 40 years in jail Thursday.
Federal prosecutors termed Schulte, 35,'s transfer of Vault 7's CIA cyber espionage tools "some of the most heinous, brazen violations of the Espionage Act in American history." After a deadlocked jury, he was convicted of improperly handling confidential material and obstruction of justice in July 2022.
On March 7, 2017, WikiLeaks released the first of 26 CIA documents leaks.
According to The Associated Press, the CIA hacked cellphones for espionage and tried to turn internet-connected TVs into listening devices.
The CIA stated Schulte "placed directly at risk CIA personnel, programs, and assets; and jeopardized U.S. national security."
"The impact on the CIA was immediately catastrophic," federal prosecutors claimed. "The WikiLeaks Disclosure was a "digital Pearl Harbor." We died in the water."
Prosecutors said Schulte leaked to avenge his superiors who had relocated him, withdrawn some of his IT access, and scolded him for his increasingly obstreperous behavior.
Schulte was found guilty of child pornography in September.
"Today, Joshua Schulte was rightly punished not only for his betrayal of our country, but for his substantial possession of horrific child pornographic material," FBI Assistant Director in Charge James Smith stated after sentence. "The severity of his actions is evident, and the sentence imposed reflects the magnitude of the disturbing and harmful threat posed by his criminal conduct."