Citation[edit | edit source]
Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982, Pub. L. No. 97-200, codified at 50 U.S.C. §§421-26.
Overview[edit | edit source]
The Act provides for the protection of information concerning the identity of covert intelligence agents. It generally covers persons authorized to know the identity of such agents or who learn the identity of covert agents as a result of their general access to classified information, but can also apply to a person who learns of the identity of a covert agent through a "pattern of activities intended to identify and expose covert agents" and discloses the identity to any individual not authorized access to classified information, with reason to believe that such activities would impair U.S. foreign intelligence efforts.
This crime is subject to a fine or imprisonment for a term of not more than three years. To be convicted, a violator must have knowledge that the information identifies a covert agent whose identity the United States is taking affirmative measures to conceal. To date, there have been no reported cases interpreting the statute, but it did result in one conviction pursuant to a guilty plea.
References[edit | edit source]
- Persons with direct access to information regarding the identities are subject to a prison term of not more than 10 years, while those who learn the identities through general access to classified information are subject to a term not greater than five years. 50 U.S.C. §421. Charges of conspiracy, aiding and abetting, or misprision of felony are not available in connection with the offense, except in the case of a person who engaged in a pattern of activities to disclose the identities of covert agents or persons with authorized access to classified information. 50 U.S.C. §422(b).
- See Richard B. Schmitt, Rare Statute Figures in Rove Case, L.A. Times, July 15, 2005, at A15 (reporting 1985 conviction of Sharon Scranage, a clerk for the CIA in Ghana, for disclosing identities of covert agents).