The Embassy of the United States of America presents its compliments to the Ministry of Popular Power for External Relations of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and has the honor to request the provisional arrest for the purpose of extradition of United States citizen Edward J. SNOWDEN, pursuant to the Treaty and Additional Article between the United States of America and the United States of Venezuela, signed on January 19 and 21, 1922 (the “Extradition Treaty”).
The United States seeks SNOWDEN’s provisional arrest should SNOWDEN seek to travel to or transit through Venezuela. SNOWDEN is a flight risk because of the substantial charges he is facing and his current and active attempts to remain a fugitive. The United States urges that SNOWDEN be kept in custody, if arrested.
SNOWDEN is charged by Compliant in Case No. 1:13 CR 265, filed on June 14, 2013, in the United States District Court For the Eastern District of Virginia. SNOWDEN is charged with violations of 18 U.S.C. § 793(d) (Unauthorized Disclosure of National Defense Information); 18 U.S.C. § 798(a)(3) (Unauthorized Disclosure of Classified Communications Intelligence); and 18 U.S.C. § 641 (Theft of Government Property).
The maximum penalty for a violation of Title 18, United States Code Section 793(d) (Unauthorized Disclosure of National Defense Information) is 10 years imprisonment, a fine not more than US$250,000 and a term of supervised release of up to five years.
The maximum penalty for a violation of Title 18, United States Code Section 798(a)(3) (Unauthorized Disclosure of Classified Communication Intelligence) is 10 years imprisonment, a fine not more than US$250,000 and a term of supervised release of up to five years.
The maximum penalty for a violation of Title 18, United States Code Section 641 (Theft of Government Property) is 10 years imprisonment, a fine not more than US$250,000 and a term of supervised release of up to five years.
Pursuant to Title 18, United States Code, Section 3282, the statue of limitations for the charged offenses is five years. Because the charges in the Criminal Complaint arise from conduct by SNOWDEN that occurred between March and June 14, 2013, and the Criminal Complaint was filed on June 14, 2013, the statue of limitations has not lapsed on the offenses charged.
On June 14, 2013, a warrant for the arrest of SNOWDEN was issued by U.S. Magistrate Judge John F. Anderson for the offenses charged in the Complaint. This warrant remains valid and executable.
SNOWDEN, a U.S. citizen and fugitive who is currently in Russia, unlawfully released classified information and documents to international media outlets. Since approximately March 2013, SNOWDEN was employed by the U.S. based strategy and technology consulting firm called Booz Allen Hamilton (Booz Allen), a company which, among others, role serves as a contractor for the United States government, including U.S. intelligence agencies. As part of his employment and following a background investigation, SNOWDEN was granted a United States government security clearance, which entitled him to access to classified national defense information. Additionally, SNOWDEN acknowledged his responsibility and agreed to protect that classified national defense information from disclosure to persons not entitled to receive it.
Between on or about June 5, 2013, and June 9, 2013, classified information was published on the internet and in print by multiple newspapers, including The Washington Post and The Guardian. The articles and internet postings by The Washington Post and The Guardian included classified documents that were marked TOP SECRET. The Washington Post and The Guardian later revealed that SNOWDEN was the principal source for the classified information – and SNOWDEN, on or about June 9, 2013, in a videotaped interview with The Guardian, admitted that he was the person who illegally provided those documents to reporters. Evidence indicates that SNOWDEN had access to the classified documents in question; accessed those documents; and, subsequently, provided those documents to media outlets without authorization and in violation of U.S. law.
Provisional arrest is covered by Articles XI and XII of the Extradition Treaty. The offense of “Theft of Government Property” is covered by Article II (17) and (18), as the property has a value greater than US$200. The offenses of “Unauthorized Disclosure of National Defense Information” and “Unauthorized Disclosure of Classified Communication Intelligence” are covered by Article II (11) and (12).
Pursuant to Article XII of the Extradition Treaty, the United States requests the seizure of all articles, instruments, objects of value, or documents in the possession of SNOWDEN at the time of his arrest that may relate to the offense for which extradition is sought for later delivery to the United States authorities should extradition be granted. This includes, but is not limited to, all computer devices, electronic storage devices, and other forms of electronic media.
Edward J. SNOWDEN, a citizen of the United States, is described as a white male with brown hair and brown eyes. He was born in the State of North Carolina in the United States on 21 June 1983. On 2 March 2007, SNOWDEN was issued U.S. passport number 160455637. On June 22 2013, that passport was revoked. SNOWDEN may also be in possession of another passport, number 018111064, which he previously reported as lost or stolen. A photograph of SNOWDEN is included with this request.
Please be assured that the United States will present a formal extradition request with the required documentation within the time limit specified by the Extradition Treaty.
The Embassy of the United States of America avails itself of this opportunity to reiterate to the Ministry for Popular Power of External Relations of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela the assurances of its highest consideration.
Embassy of the United States of America,
Caracas, July 3, 2013.
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