Friday, June 02, 2006

WHL Wins Big

Five news organizations to pay Wen Ho Lee $750,000
Settlement with Taiwanese American part of lawsuit against U.S. government

The Associated Press (apwire)
Published 2006-06-03 05:16 (KST)

The Associated Press and four other news organizations have agreed to pay a former nuclear weapons scientist $750,000 (euro585,000) as part of a settlement of his privacy lawsuit against the U.S. government that had turned into a fight over reporters' confidential sources.

Wen Ho Lee, a Taiwanese-American, once suspected of being a spy, ended his six-and-a-half-year-old lawsuit against the Energy and Justice Departments on Friday. Lee had accused federal officials of smearing him by leaking information that he was under investigation as a spy for China.

The case took an unusual turn when federal judges held five reporters in contempt of court for refusing to disclose the sources of their stories about the government's espionage investigation of Lee.

The payment by AP, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post and ABC is the first of its kind in recent memory, and perhaps ever, legal and media experts said.

The companies bluntly said they agreed to the sum to forestall jail sentences for their reporters, even larger payments in the form of fines and the prospect of revealing confidential sources.

"We were reluctant to contribute anything to this settlement, but we sought relief in the courts and found none. Given the rulings of the federal courts in Washington and the absence of a federal shield law, we decided this was the best course to protect our sources and to protect our journalists," the companies said.

The statement noted that the accuracy of the reporting itself was not challenged.

The final terms of Lee's settlement with the government were not immediately known, but a draft settlement circulated last week included a payment of $895,000 (euro698,400.31)in attorney's fees and no admission that the departments had violated Lee's privacy rights.

"WHL Wins Big"...

looks to me that the big winner was the lawyers
It doesn't bother me that the media got stuck with a loss on this.

But, remember that Wen Ho Lee was guilty of copying classified data to removable media and removing it from a secure area. If the FBI were not a bunch of nincompoops, Wen Ho Lee would be doing hard time.
Dear Bad:

Remember, Wen Ho Lee DID do some hard time--9 months in solitary. There have been some other, even more egregious violations of security rules, by people who did NO TIME WHATSOEVER. But they were in positions of power, and not subject to being made into convenient scapegoats in a broader political chess game. (Yes, yes; what WHL did was dead wrong, no question. But draconian punishment, as suggested by others earlier on this blog, should not be made extreme, just so we can feel self-righteous.)

You must be kidding me:

(Yes, yes; what WHL did was dead wrong, no question. But draconian punishment, as suggested by others earlier on this blog, should not be made extreme, just so we can feel self-righteous.

And know you know why people get away with murder and gang bangers are prevalent nationally, especially in states were they don't carry concealed. It must be that college atmosphere that LANS is talking about getting rid of.
Ask the son of a bitch again where the 5 copies that he made are. The last time the FBI (bureaucratic fucking screwups) asked him that he "couldn't remember".

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.
Since we are on spies, "Spying on the Bomb" (Jeffrey Richelson), is interesting reading. Of course, for those inside, you have a better view of what has transpired on the espionage front
Agree with Brad completely.
A spy is a spy and should be dealt with accordingly. The only problem in todays world is that being executed publicly by firing squad or public hanging is not politically correct and the fact that we have far to many touchy feelly pinheads in control. If in fact WHL was guilty him and his bonehead lawyers should have never been awarded a dime, and WHL should have been introduced to Thyrone in the big house. Not knowing all the fact and only what the newspapers print, I can not come to a conclusion. I can only assume that the FBI botched the case on a technicality.
Let the witch hunts begin, perhaps starting with b-ohica. I'm sure someone from HX division can relate some experiences about how a minor incident can be "information massaged" into a huge incident.
I stand by what I said above. Now that you are privatized I hope the rules get more stringent and that the penalties for this act will in fact be enforced to the max by the FBI, CIA and NSA. Maybe this time they will have rock solid evidence before they go after someone. Who knows, maybe they are monitoring everything that we saying right now. I really don't care if they monitor all conversations, written, verbal, Internet,etc. Like I have said before, if you have nothing to hide or have done nothing wrong that will land you in jail, then you have nothing worries. Only those who live a promiscuous life style or are always living on the edge have to worry. However, there is always time to clean up your act or you will just have to go to bed worrying, with one eye open all of the time.

Let the witch hunts begin, perhaps starting with b-ohica. I'm sure someone from HX division can relate some experiences about how a minor incident can be "information massaged" into a huge incident.
# posted by dug : 6/03/2006 07:47:11 PM
I'm always amazed by people who believe everything they read in the newspapers especially if what they read is leaked by self-serving government officials.

All the ranting and raving back and forth about WHL's guilt or innocence is extremely juvenile. Folks, accept it. He's not guilty of anything more than what he pled to unless he writes a book describing his guilt. And if any of you are accused of any kind of crime, you are not guilty either until you plead guilty or are found guilty by a jury.

So many people seem so angry that this man "was not hanged by his neck until dead". And they are so angry that the FBI was so incompetent that it could not find the proof that he was a spy. Maybe there was no proof except for the wild-eyed stories in various newspapers.

Give it up.
Wen Ho Lee is the victim here, and the only "bastard" that got away with anything is the guy sitting in the Governor's office today. You're only pissed because Dr. Lee was used for political purposes, and in the process it brought unwanted attention to the Lab, and you know this contributed to the eventual demise of your beloved UC monopoly. You know that's really what's pissing you off here, so go ahead and vent, but direct your wrath at the man in the fourth floor of the merry round house in Santa Fe. Don't get all lathered up over a few megabites of piss-poor secretes that weren't even secrets worth keeping to begin with, and still aren't based on the sworn testamony given by former LANL director Harold Agnew. You do remember good old Harold don't you? He's only the best damn director LANL has ever seen, after all.
Someone left this exactly right comment on the New Mexican's web site.
"The sad thing about all this is that people will misunderstand and think that because the Feds and the media violated Lee's privacy rights, Lee's lawbreaking and disregard for national security are somehow excused."
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