Daily US Times: A former US military veteran and contractor who was jailed for leaking classified documents to the media has been released from prison.
Reality Winner was the first person during the former president Donald Trump’s era to face criminal charges for leaking government data.
Reality Winner’s release comes amid revelations that the US Justice Department received data about Democratic members of Congress as part of an effort to stem leaks.
US media reported that her data was also obtained in a 2017 probe.
Earlier this month, the justice department said that it would stop seizing reporters’ data during leak investigations. The seizure of lawmakers’ data will be probed by the justices department’s internal investigator, it was announced last week.
Winner was jailed in 2018 for providing classified documents related to alleged Russian election hacking to the Intercept website.
The 29-year-old was working as a linguist at an National Security Administration (NSA) facility in the US state of Georgia when she was detained and charged under the Espionage Act.
According to an FBI affidavit in support of the arrest warrant, she was caught after investigators noticed that the leaked document appeared to have been folded or creased, indicating that it had been “printed and then carried out of a secured space.”
She was sentenced to over five years in prison after a trial. She has repeatedly pressed for a presidential pardon since her arrest.
The journalist’s lawyer announced her released from prison for good behaviour on Monday, saying she and her team are “relieved and hopeful”.