Fri, Nov 16, 2012 - Page 7 News List

Petraeus mistress had classified data: sources

SUPPLIER UNKNOWN:Both Petraeus and his mistress, Paula Broadwell, denied that Petraeus had provided her with substantial classified information, sources said

Reuters, WASHINGTON

A computer used by Paula Broadwell, the woman whose affair with former CIA director David Petraeus led to his resignation, contained substantial classified information that should have been stored under more secure conditions, law enforcement and national security officials said on Wednesday.

The contents and amount of the classified material — and questions about how Broadwell got it — are significant enough to warrant a continuing investigation, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to comment publicly.

The details about material held by Broadwell, a reserve officer in military intelligence, emerged on Wednesday as the Pentagon suspended her security clearance.

There are growing concerns among military and law enforcement officials about the potential fallout from the affair between Petraeus and Broadwell, who co-authored a biography of the retired general.

Late on Wednesday, the US House Intelligence Committee announced that Petraeus would testify today behind closed doors about the attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

Leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees were briefed on Wednesday on the Petraeus matter by leaders of the FBI and CIA.

During a news conference at the White House on Wednesday, US President Barack Obama said there was no indication so far that any classified information had been disclosed as a result of the affair.

Obama also said that for now, he would refrain from judging whether he should have been told earlier than last Wednesday about the probe involving his CIA chief, who resigned on Friday before the affair became public.

Broadwell’s security clearances gave her access to certain classified material, several officials said.

Government rules require such material to be stored in secure locations or computers.

Two officials familiar with the case said investigators are asking whether Broadwell followed government rules for handling classified information.

During the FBI investigation that led to the discovery of the affair between Petraeus and Broadwell, both individuals denied that Petraeus had supplied her with any classified information and the FBI accepted those explanations, law enforcement sources have said.

Law enforcement officials also have said that they believe the continuing FBI probe into the matter is likely to end without criminal charges.

If Broadwell is found to have mishandled classified information, she could face action under administrative security regulations.

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