A former employee with the National Security Agency (NSA) pleaded guilty to attempting to sell classified information to Russia, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Monday.
Jareh Sebastian Dalke, 31, of Colorado pleaded guilty to six counts of attempting to transmit classified information to a Russian agent, the DOJ said in a press release. Dalke admitted that between August and September 2022 he used an encrypted email to transfer excerpts of three classified documents to an individual he thought to be a Russian agent, but who was actually a covert FBI employee. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: GOP Rep To Unveil Report Blasting Biden’s Joint Aid Request For Israel And Ukraine)
A former NSA employee pleaded guilty on Monday to attempting to sell classified documents to a person he believed was a Russian agent — but who was actually an undercover FBI employee. https://t.co/yzHukllns8
— ABC News (@ABC) October 24, 2023
All of the excerpts Dalke transferred contained National Defense Information (NDI) classified as Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) and he obtained them when he worked for the NSA between June and July 2022.
Dalke requested $85,000 to the covert FBI agent for the information on or around Aug. 26, 2022, according to the DOJ. Dalke claimed the information would have value for Russia and promised to share more information.
The former NSA employee later arranged to transfer more classified information to the purported Russian agent in downtown Denver by using a laptop and instructions provided by the covert FBI employee. He sent the FBI employee five files, one letter and four files with top secret NDI, and moments later he was arrested.
“I am very happy to finally provide this information to you…I look forward to our friendship and shared benefit. Please let me know if there are desired documents to find and I will try when I return to my main office,” Dalke wrote in the letter, according to the DOJ.
Dalke conceded as part of his guilty plea agreement to willfully transferring the files to the FBI employee, believing the information would hurt the U.S. and benefit Russia.
Dalke faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. He is scheduled to be sentenced April 26, 2024.