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Porkins Policy Radio episode 129 Kevin Gosztola on the Reality Winner Case

Journalist Kevin Gosztola of Shadow Proof joins me for an in depth discussion of the Reality Winner whistleblowing case. We begin by recapping the case itself and who Reality Winner is. Kevin talks about Winner’s career in the Air Force and later with the NSA as a contractor. We talk about what Winner is accuses of doing: leaking a classified report on Russian hacking of voter software to The Intercept. Kevin touches on The Intercept’s sloppy handling of Winner’s information, and how this contributed to her ultimate arrest. We also discuss the political issues surrounding Winner’s leak. Kevin and I then explore provision 793(e) of the Espionage Act which is what Winner is being accused of breaking. Kevin talks about the broad interpretation that the government is using and how this is merely the latest expansion of government power to persecute whistleblowers. Kevin uses about two important historical whistleblower cases to illustrate this point: Navy Analyst Samuel Morrison, and the State Department’s Stephen Kim. We discuss how the government has criminalized the very act of leaking, and has blocked whistleblowers from arguing why they leaked said documents. We finish out the first hour by talking about the government’s bogus claims that Reality Winner is an anti-American super spy.

In the second hour Kevin and I dive into the allegations by Winner and her defense team that the FBI violated her rights during the so called “interview.” Kevin explains how this interview was in fact an interrogation. We talk about the fact that Winner was never mirandized or told that she could in fact leave whenever she wanted to, as the government maintains she had a right to do. Kevin lays out several important factors during this interrogation/interview that would lead one to believe that Winner was in fact under arrest the moment the FBI arrived. Kevin also talks about the US v Craighead case and how that applies to Winner’s motion to suppress her alleged confession. Kevin and I also touch on the broader implications of this aspect. We talk about how it puts the onus on the accused to ask for their rights from law enforcement. Kevin talks about how this motion might play out and why it is so important to Winner’s case going forward. We round out the conversation by talking about the media’s lack of coverage of Reality Winner’s case, and why she should be paying close attention to it.

Download PPR episode 129

Show Notes:

ShadowProof.com

Donate to Shadow Proof

@kgosztola

Stand With Reality

FBI Agents Didn’t Think Reality Winner Was Spy—Yet Government Is Prosecuting Her Like One

The Espionage Act And NSA Whistleblower Reality Winner’s Uphill Struggle To Defend Herself

Defense: Government Puts Burden On Reality Winner To Excuse FBI Violating Her Rights

Appeals Court Agrees Reality Winner ‘Hates’ America—So She Will Remain In Pretrial Detention

FBI transcript of Reality Winner interrogation

Declaration of Reality Winner

Governments response to defendant’s motion to suppress defendant’s statements

Court Documents: US v. Reality Leigh Winner

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