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Leftist Lawyer Guilty of Leaking Classified US Documents

A self-described leftist pleaded guilty to leaking classified FBI documents but will serve only 20 months in jail. Pollard was sentenced for life.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 12/20/2009, 12:36 AM / Last Update: 12/20/2009, 5:58 AM

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An American lawyer and linguist, who was born in Israel, has plead guilty to leaking highly classified FBI document to an Internet blogger and agreed to a prison sentence of 20 months. The final sentence will be decided by the courts.

The average sentence for similar offenses is approximately four years, but Pentagon analyst Jonathan Pollard is serving a life sentence in jail for leaking documents. The latest case involved Shamai Kedem Leibowitz, 39, who also is the grandson of the late outspoken leftist scholar and philosopher Yeshayahu Leiboiwtz. The younger Leibowitz worked as a linguist from January through August of this year and held top secret security clearance at an FBI Task Force in Maryland.

The Justice Department did not reveal details of what documents he leaked, but the FBI's Innocent Images initiative, an international task force aimed at child pornography, is located in the offices where he worked.

Leibowitz's “Pursuing Justice” blog reveals extreme left wing views, including condemnation of the Israeli "occupation” and the national religious camp. He also was on the defense team of Marwan Barghouti, the Palestinian Authority terrorist who is serving five life terms in prison for involvement in terrorist attacks on Israelis.

He supports the “one-state” solution, which implicitly would turn Jews into a minority in Israel, and has been active in a campaign to encourage American institutions not to buy Israeli bonds.

The U.S. Justice Department said that Leibowitz admitted giving a blogger five FBI secret documents relating to communication intelligence, but the blogger was not identified. "The willful disclosure of classified information to those not entitled to receive it is a serious crime," an assistant attorney general said. "Today's guilty plea should serve as a warning to anyone in government who would consider compromising our nation's secrets."

"As a trusted member of the FBI ranks, Leibowitz abused the trust of the FBI and the American public by using his access to classified information for his own purposes," said special agent in charge Richard McFeely.