Criminal Attorney Oklahoma Defense Lawyer Adam R. Banner OKLAHOMA CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY AT LAW

The Oklahoma Legal Group Blog

NSA Leeker Edward Snowden

Adam Banner - Friday, June 28, 2013

Some say he's a patriot. Others say that he has betrayed his country. Regardless of your opinion of infamous NSA leeker Edward Snowden and his actions, on thing is for sure: he's caused quite the uproar...and he's going to need some damn fine defense attorneys.

Though Edward Snowden currently waits in Russia in the face of American authorities who have sought his extradition on espionage charges, Mr. Snowden's  father recently discussed the situation with his son. The elder Snowden apparently believes that the United States government could convince his son to return to the US and stand trial so long as his son is not jailed before trial or subjected to a gag order. Fat chance.

Regardless, the United States has revoked Edward Snowden's passport, and all indications point to Snowden seeking refuge in Ecuador, which just so happens to host Julian Assange of WikiLeaks fame. However, Ecuador has yet to grant Mr. Snowden asylum, and there is no indication that Snowden's request will in fact be honored. However, Ecuadorian officials have vowed that they will not delay in evaluating Snowden's request.

Many, probably wonder what crimes Snowden has allegedly committed. Snowden has been charged in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia with three federal crimes:

- Theft of Government Property in violation of 18 U.S.C. 641,

- Unauthorized Communication of National Defense Information in violation of 18 U.S.C. 793(d), and

- Willful Communication of Classified Communications Intelligence Information to an Unauthorized Person in violation of 18 U.S.C. 798(a)(3).

Each of those charges carries a maximum of 10 years in prison.

So, the question becomes, was Snowden wrong in his actions? Well, I guess that depends on your definition of "wrong." Clearly, he violated United States federal law if he did in fact knowingly and willfully commit the acts our government alleges. From everything I've seen, Mr. Snowden has not been too bashful in regards to owning up to his actions. The public knowledge that he has admitted to the allegations and the media circus which has surrounded his admissions will make it very hard for his criminal lawyer to create a defense.

But still, if and when Mr. Snowden faces the charges, he will be entitled to a jury of his peers. How will his fellow countrymen view his actions? What sentence does Mr. Snowden deserve for shedding light on the outright invasion of his fellow citizens' secrecy?

I don't know the answers to these questions, but I do know that I don't agree with the government's encroachment on our expectations of privacy.

You can read more about my views on that topic at the Huffington Post.  You can also find more at https://www.oklahomalegalgroup.com

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