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Ex-CIA officer who talked to press about waterboarding charged under Espionage Act

John C. Kiriakou, a former CIA officer who expressed public doubts over the use of waterboarding as an interrogation technique, was indicted Thursday on charges he leaked classified secrets to journalists.

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Witnesses are seated as the US Senate Intelligence Committee holds a full committee hearing on "World Wide Threats." on January 31, 2012 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, with witnesses including CIA director David Petraeus. (KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images)

John C. Kiriakou, a former CIA officer who expressed public doubts over the use of waterboarding as an interrogation technique, was indicted Thursday on charges he leaked classified secrets to journalists.

Kiriakou was charged in January with leaking secrets, including the name of a covert agent and the role of another CIA employee in classified operations, Agence France-Presse reported.

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The CIA employee had participated in the capture of suspected Al Qaeda operative Abu Zubaydah in the months after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to the Associated Press

Kiriakou, who retired from the CIA in 2004, became one of the first government officials to publicly acknowledge the use of waterboarding during interrogations, describing how Zubaydah was subjected to the technique widely viewed as torture.

The five-count indictment includes three charges under the Espionage Act on the basis Kiriakou revealed national defense information to individuals not authorized to receive it, CNN wrote.

If convicted, Kiriakou faces a maximum of 45 years in prison.

The indictment also claims Kiriakou tried to trick the CIA into allowing him to include classified information in his 2010 book, "The Reluctant Spy: My Secret Life in the CIA's War on Terror."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120405/john-c-kiriakou-cia-waterboarding