U.S. Rep. Pete King, R-N.Y., on Sunday called for the extradition of confessed intelligence leaker Edward Snowden to the U.S., where the government can prosecute Snowden “to the fullest extent of the law.”
“If Edward Snowden did in fact leak the [National Security Agency] data, as he claims, the United States government must prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law and begin extradition proceedings at the earliest date,” King, who is chairman of the Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, said in a statement. “The United States must make it clear that no country should be granting this individual asylum. This is a matter of extraordinary consequence to American intelligence.”
Snowden, an outside contractor who was working at the NSA, revealed his identity as the leaker of documents about the agency’s surveillance activities in the U.S. through the Guardian newspaper. The U.K. paper first reported last week that the government is collecting information on the phone calls on virtually all Americans. Snowden also leaked documents on a governmental program to monitor online communications as well. Snowden, who had worked for three months at the government contractor Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corp. (NYSE:BAH), said he is currently in Hong Kong.
King is the first member of Congress to comment since the revelation of the leaker’s identity.