CIA Presses for Leak Probe Into Ex-Official

By From The Blotter

Dec 21, 2007 4:42pm

A request from the CIA for a criminal investigation into the ex-spook who recently gave an interview with ABC News to discuss harsh interrogations of terror suspects is "both expected and normal," according to the man’s lawyer. "It is a routine act that the CIA undertakes even when they know no violation has occurred," said attorney Mark Zaid, who represents former CIA official John Kiriakou. ABC News aired an unprecedented interview with Kiriakou Dec. 10, in which he told correspondent Brian Ross he believed that the CIA used a technique known as "waterboarding," or controlled drowning, to extract information from a controversial al Qaeda captive. Click Here for Full Blotter Coverage. The CIA has requested the Justice Department examine whether Kiriakou illegally shared classified information by giving interviews to ABC News and other outlets, the Washington Post reported Friday. In the interview, Kiriakou gave a carefully-worded defense of the CIA’s use of waterboarding, saying that while he believed the treatment was torture and necessary at the time, it is no longer necessary. Kiriakou’s on-the-record comments 11 days ago reportedly outraged CIA officials. Sources told ABC News some called for an investigation at the time, but the effort was squelched by higher-ups. Kiriakou said he did not witness the waterboarding but was told details by others who were present. Do you have a tip for Brian Ross and the Investigative Team?

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