US Settles Case With Matt Bissonnette, Author of Controversial Bin Laden Book

PHOTO: SEAL Team 5 member, Matt Bissonnette is seen in this undated photo from the US Navy.US Navy/Wikipedia
SEAL Team 5 member, Matt Bissonnette is seen in this undated photo from the US Navy.

The United States has settled its years-long legal battle with Matthew Bissonnette, who in 2012 authored “No Easy Day” under the pen name Mark Owen, detailing his participation in the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden.

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Bissonnette, a former Navy SEAL, signed a consent decree today acknowledging he “breached his fiduciary duties” by failing to submit his book for a security review by the Pentagon before publishing it and for failing to get the government's permission to publish it. Despite concerns expressed by government officials at the time the book was published, however, the United States did not formally accuse Bissonnette of revealing classified information.

As part of the settlement acknowledging his errors, Bissonnette has agreed to pay the United States all past and future proceeds from his book, which as of today total nearly $6.7 million dollars. He’ll also be required to pay the government’s legal fees of over $1.3 million.

"This enforcement action does not discredit Mr. Bissonnette's military service, but reinforces that it is important for our service members and individuals who have been assigned positions of trust and granted access to classified information to comply with the obligations set forth in their non-disclosure agreements to protect classified information after leaving the U.S. military and government in an effort to protect our nation's national security," Nicole Navas, a spokesperson at the U.S. Department of Justice, said in a statement to ABC News.