Files in Lawsuit Against CIA Stolen in ‘Disturbing’ University Break-In

from Common Dreams

University of Washington police are investigating a break-in at the school’s Center for Human Rights (UWCHR) after files from a lawsuit against the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) were stolen from the center’s offices.

A computer and hard drive containing information from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed on October 2 were stolen from the offices of Dr. Angelina Godoy sometime between Thursday and Sunday, according to police. The UWCHR is investigating whether the CIA illegally withheld information about human rights violations carried out by U.S.-backed El Salvador army officers during the country’s civil war against leftist rebels in the 1980s.

Godoy said “about 90 percent of the information” was taken in the break-in. The UWCHR has backups of the stolen files, but Godoy said the concern now is how the data might be used against rights workers in El Salvador who are involved in the lawsuit.

“What worries us most is not what we have lost but what someone else may have gained,” she said in a statement. “The files include sensitive details of personal testimonies and pending investigations.”

The break-in had “suspicious and disturbing” elements, the Seattle Times reported—including that it coincided with a campus visit by CIA director John Brennan, who gave a speech at the university’s law school Friday.

[read more here]

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