• A former NSA employee is accused of attempting to sell top-secret files to a foreign government.
  • Jareh Sebastian Dalke tried to sell these files to an undercover FBI agent.
  • Dalke now faces, per the DOJ, three charges under the Espionage Act.

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A former National Security Agency employee has been accused by the Department of Justice of trying to sell US defense secrets to a foreign government.

Jareh Sebastian Dalke, 30, was arrested on Wednesday in Denver, Colorado, per a DOJ press release. Dalke was caught after he liaised with an undercover FBI agent posing as a representative of a foreign government.

Dalke worked as an information systems security designer at the NSA from June 6 to July 1, per the DOJ’s press release.

The DOJ alleged in its criminal complaint that between August and September, Dalke had used an encrypted account to send excerpts of classified documents to someone he thought was a foreign official, who turned out to be an FBI agent.

Per the DOJ, Dalke had taken three classified documents with him when he left the NSA. According to the criminal complaint, Dalke sent excerpts of the documents — including their classification markings — as a “small sample to what is possible.”

The affidavit stated that Dalke had also sent the undercover FBI agent a complete, four-page document containing information on an unnamed foreign leader as a “show of good faith,” saying he was “willing to provide full documents without reservation.”

The undercover agent paid Dalke around $16,000 in the cryptocurrency he requested. Dalke then asked for $85,000 to hand over the files he had on hand.

On August 11, several days after this exchange, Dalke applied to rejoin the NSA. The DOJ alleged in its affidavit that it believed Dalke was “seeking to access additional national defense information.”

Dalke currently faces charges for three violations of the Espionage Act, which “carries a potential sentence of death or any term of years up to life,” per the DOJ.

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