Thursday, January 08, 2009

E-Mail SNAFU Exposes Names of Confidential Witnesses in Federal Probe

Jaikumar Vijayan writes on ComputerWorld:

From the how-not-to-keep-a-secret department comes the tale of an official at U.S Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office in Chicago who inadvertently e-mailed a document containing the names of more than 20 confidential witnesses in a federal probe to the media.

According to reports published by the Chicago Tribune and The Smoking Gun Web site, the snafu happened yesterday, when a spokesman for Fitzgerald attached the document to an e-mail message announcing felony charges against individuals named John Walsh and Charles Martin. The two men were partners in a foreign-exchange futures dealer called One World Capital Group, located in the Chicago area but now defunct, that is accused of defrauding customers of $15 million.

Included along with the 62-page complaint filed against Walsh and Martin was a one-page chart that identified 24 sources who were mentioned only in an anonymous fashion in the complaint itself. The sources included former One World employees, customers and "other" individuals, according to a copy of the document that was posted by The Smoking Gun with the names blurred out. The document also apparently identified two investment groups that hadn't been publicly named.

More here.


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