Senate Intel Staffer Pleads Guilty To Lying To FBI About Media Leaks

Chuck Ross | Reporter

A former staffer for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence pleaded guilty Monday to lying to the FBI about leaking sensitive information to the media about former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

James Wolfe, the former director of security for the Senate panel, pleaded guilty to one count of making false statements to the FBI during its investigation into media leaks, the Department of Justice announced.

Wolfe, 57, was indicted in June for lying to investigators during a Dec. 15, 2017 interview about his contact with four reporters.

Wolfe was interviewed in December 2017, while he was still with the Senate Intelligence panel, as part of a leak investigation opened by the FBI in April 2017. (RELATED: Senate Intel Staffer Indicted For Leaking Information About Carter Page)

Wolfe was in a multi-year romantic relationship with Ali Watkins, a national security reporter who worked at BuzzFeed and Politico before joining The New York Times.

Pictured is New York Times reporter Ali Watkins. (Photo: YouTube screen capture)

At BuzzFeed, Watkins published a story on April 3, 2017 that revealed Page, the former Trump aide, was listed as “Male-1” in court documents related to a case against a Russian spy ring. Page was not accused of wrongdoing in the case, but President Donald Trump critics have used the disclosure to argue that he was an associate of Russian spies.

As part of his plea, Wolfe admitted lying to the FBI when he denied providing unclassified but non-public information to reporters.

Wolfe acknowledged lying about contact with a journalist who reported in October 2017 that the Senate Intelligence Committee had subpoenaed Page.

“Wolfe also admitted making false statements to the FBI about his contacts with three additional reporters, including one of the authors of the aforementioned article,” the Justice Department said.

Wolfe faces sentencing on Dec. 20.

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