I was perusing YourNewsWire, today, sharing information with a friend, demonstrating conspiracy theories, fake news, Russian proxy sites, and so on. YourNewsWire is a known fake news/Russian propaganda site run by Sean Adl-Tabatabai, which I previously exposed at Russian Proxy “News” Site Exposed: YourNewsWire. It’s almost meaningless to continue exposing YourNewsWire, obviously, he’s earning clickbait money. Although I have turned it in countless times to Facebook, I still see it frequently cited.
While I was there I noticed the following headline on YourNewWire:
Imran Awan, the IT person employed by Debbie Wassermann-Shultz and paid obscene amounts of money to do routine IT work was recently arrested at Dulles Airport, here in the Washington DC area, trying to return to his home in Pakistan. His brother and others had already escaped the closing net.
The title, alone, made me question everything about the story, starting with “classified Intel”. How would a foreign national get access to classified information? Even more curious, why would he get access to intelligence? Who in the heck would approve his need to know? Wasserman-Shultz employed Awan at both the DNC and in her personal staff as a Congressperson from Florida.
But this scintillating headline just begs attention and is most likely simply clickbait.
The truth is not so exciting.
The charges include conspiracy and making false statements.
Two short paragraphs summarize the entire case against him.
Awan and other IT aides for House Democrats have been on investigators’ radar for months over concerns of possible double-billing, alleged equipment theft, and access to sensitive computer systems. Most lawmakers fired Awan in February, but Schultz had kept him on until his arrest in July.
The indictment itself, which merely represents formal charges and is not a finding of guilt, addresses separate allegations that Awan and his wife engaged in a conspiracy to obtain home equity lines of credit from the Congressional Federal Credit Union by giving false information about two properties – and then sending the proceeds to individuals in Pakistan.
To Sean Abl-Tabatabai’s credit, he does link to a New York Post story, IT staffers may have compromised sensitive data to foreign intelligence. The problem is Sean says “sold Classified Intel” and the NY Post article only goes so far:
Investigators now suspect that sensitive US government data — possibly including classified information — could have been compromised and may have been sold to hostile foreign governments (emphasis added).
The whole gist of the story was changed by Sean Adl-Tabatabai from a “could have” to a “sold”.
Artistic license? It’s not art, it’s journalism. Otherwise, it’s just fake news or Russian propaganda, but I repeat myself.