Another Israeli Soldier Accused of Stealing Documents



By: OMER SHACHNAI  
Published: October 10th 2010
in News » Israel

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A successor to Anat Kam? An IDF female soldier has been charged with overstepping authority and endangering the security of the state, by removing a disk on key containing top secret documents on Iran from the National Security Council (English for the "MABAL"). The soldier says in her defense that she took the storage device only to prove the fact that the information was not adequately secured and it could have fallen into even worse hands.

 

The soldier is accused of stealing hundreds of classified documents, some of them regarding the Iranian nuclear threat and labeled as 'Top Secret', while visiting the offices of the National Security Council a few months ago. She found the disk on key during her visit, placed it in her bag, and traveled from central Israel to her home in the south, the prosecution says. After a few hours its absence was noticed and the investigation began.

 

Upon discovering the incident, officials from the Prime Minister's Office immediately had the soldier detained for questioning and confiscated her personal computer and cellular phone, where the information was stored. The soldier claimed during questioning that she had taken the disk in order to give it to her commander because she believed that keeping confidential material in such a manner constituted a foul act of neglect. Her attorney also said in response that she did not intend to do any harm but vice versa.

 

However, the military prosecution did not accept this explanation and decided to indict the soldier on charges that carry a sentence of up to five years in prison. There has been no evidence so far that the soldier copied any of the material. She is performing mandatory army service as part of a team whose line of work consists of maintaining encoded communication networks. In fact, she was visiting the National Security Council offices with her commander and a number of other soldiers brought in to do maintenance work, and it was in the facility's encryption center where she came across the disk on key. The device is used to transfer information inside classified networks within the IDF military intelligence ("AMAN").

 

Some six hundred documents were stored on the device, some 45 of them labeled 'Top Secret', and others ranging from 'confidential' to 'secret'. "The exposure of these documents to an unaccredited source could cause severe and ongoing damage to the state's security," the indictment says. The IDF spokesman said: "We are talking about a soldier who has gained a storage device containing confidential material. She has been charged, but since it is a rather sensitive issue, we cannot say anything more about it".

 

The soldier's trial is due to start in the coming weeks.



Related articles: (top secret documents, IDF soldier, National Security Council )
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