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CIA rejects request for release of bin Laden’s porn collection

Thu Jun 11, 2015 12:21AM
Osama bin Laden (file photo)

Osama bin Laden (file photo)

The US Central Intelligence Agency has rejected a journalist’s FOIA request to view a porn collection purportedly recovered from the compound of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

David Covucci, a journalist with the BroBible, said on Wednesday that the CIA rejected the request he had filed earlier.

“I can handle knowing what kind of porn Osama bin Laden watched,” he said at the time, adding, the release will not make me “like him more” or “hate him less”.
The CIA, however, refused to do so, citing a statute that allows the spy agency to avoid FOIA requests about operations.


CIA’s rejection letter to a BroBibe journalist (@DavidCovucci)

“With regard to the pornographic material Osama Bin Laden had in his possession at the time of his death, responsive records, should they exist, would be contained in the operational files. The CIA Information Act, 50 U.S.C 431, as amended, exempts CIA operational files from search, review, publication, and disclosure requirements of the FOIA. To the extent that this material exists, the CIA would be prohibited by 18 USC Section 1461 from mailing obscene matter,” said CIA’s information and privacy coordinator, Michael Lavergne, in a letter to Covucci.

In May, Jeffrey Anchukaitis, a spokesman for Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, told the Guardian that the material would not be released “due to the nature of their contents”.

He confirmed for the first time that such material had been recovered.

The existence of such a collection was initially reported in 2011, when the US announced bin Laden had been killed during an operation.

Washington announced on May 2, 2011 that bin Laden was killed in his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, by US special forces and CIA operatives. He was the founder of al-Qaeda, the terrorist organization that allegedly claimed responsibility for the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.

US officials assert that the attacks were carried out by al-Qaeda terrorists but many experts have raised questions about the official account, saying it was a false-flag operation and that Bin Laden was just a bogeyman for the US military-industrial complex.

NT/NT

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