Former Minnesota FBI Agent Sentenced to 4 Years in Prison for Leaking Documents

October 18, 2018 06:29 PM

Terry James Albury, a former FBI agent in Minnesota, was sentenced to four years in prison with an additional three years of supervised release on Thursday in U.S. District Court in Saint Paul.

Albury admitted that he leaked documents to a reporter from The Intercept, an online news publication.


He worked as an FBI Special Agent at the field office in Minneapolis at the time of the disclosure in 2016-2017. He was also working as a liaison with the Department of Customs and Border Protection at MSP International Airport during that same time period.

"I sincerely wanted to make a difference a difference and never wanted to put anyone in danger," Albury told Judge Wilhelmina Wright before she handed down the sentence.

Because of his work with the FBI, Albury held a Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information security clearance that allowed him access to "sensitive and classified FBI and other U.S. government information" according to a 2018 FBI release.

Court documents from Albury's guilty plea say Albury disclosed national defense information to an Intercept reporter. The documents included information that related to how the FBI assesses confidential informants, and a document "relating to threats posed by certain individuals from a particular Middle Eastern country."

"I fully accept responsibility for what I did," he said. "I sincerely apologize to everyone I hurt, especially my family and former colleagues."

Albury pleaded guilty to two violations of the Espionage Act. 

After handing down the four-year sentence, Judge Wright told Albury that he "put the United States at risk."

"I'm not blind to the racism in our society... I'm not blind to being a minority," she said. "But that's not an excuse."

"You can do good in this world again, but that's your decision."

Albury was allowed to leave the courthouse at his sentencing. but agreed to surrender at a date that will be determined later - likely in the next 45 to 60 days.

The defense had hoped for probation since Albury has a wife and two young children.

Albury and his attorneys declined to comment after sentencing.

Jill Sanborn, the Special Agent in Charge in the Minneapolis Field Division, released a statement:

"Former Agent Albury's conduct was an act of selfishness in an organization full of selfless people and today's sentence will serve as an appropriate punishment for his criminal conduct," it read. "He betrayed his colleagues and the trust the public puts in the men and women of the FBI to keep them and our communities safe.

"While it is never easy to investigate your own, I want to thank the professionals, both here in Minneapolis and in Washington, for their work on this case."

RELATED: Federal Prosecutors Charge Man with Leaking Sensitive Information in Role as FBI Agent

RELATED: Attorney: Former FBI Agent Will Enter Guilty Plea to Unauthorized Disclosure of National Defense Information

RELATED: Former Minnesota FBI Agent to Be Sentenced for Media Leak


Ryan Raiche and Tracy Maher

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