NSA whistleblower Reality Winner has been sentenced to five years in prison.


NSA whistleblower Reality Winner sentenced to 5 years in prison

Winner pleaded guilty to passing a classified NSA report to the Intercept.


Kris Seavers


Posted on Aug 23, 2018   Updated on May 21, 2021, 8:04 am CDT

A 63-month prison sentence has been handed down to Reality Winner, the 26-year-old former National Security Agency contractor who leaked classified material showing the Russian military attempted to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

BuzzFeed News reports the sentence, recommended by prosecutors, is the longest ever given to a civilian for leaking classified government information in U.S. history.

Winner, an Air Force veteran, pleaded guilty in June to passing a classified NSA report to online news website the Intercept. The report included information about how the agency believed the Russian military, or GRU, had attempted to send phishing emails to VR Systems, a Florida election vendor.

In July, special counsel Robert Mueller handed indictments to 12 GRU officers with charges that included sending phishing emails to hack VR Systems.

Winner’s mother Billie Winner-Davis told BuzzFeed News she’s “still angry” and believes her daughter is facing undue punished as a whistleblower.

“She doesn’t deserve to be the example or deterrent for others,” Winner-Davis said. “Her act was wrong but it doesn’t compare to others who got off.”

H/T BuzzFeed News

Share this article
*First Published: Aug 23, 2018, 4:06 pm CDT