FBI investigating whether computer stolen from Pelosi’s office could be linked to Russian intelligence

U.S. federal authorities are looking for a woman whose former romantic partner says she took a laptop from House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office during the riot at the U.S. Capitol earlier this month.

However, the FBI said in an arrest warrant Sunday, that Riley June Williams has been charged with illegally entering the Capitol and with disorderly conduct, not theft.

FBI officials said a caller claiming to be an ex of Williams said friends of hers showed him a video of her taking a laptop computer or hard drive from Pelosi’s office. The caller alleged that she intended to send the device to a friend in Russia who planned to sell it to that country’s foreign intelligence service, but that plan fell through and she either has the device or destroyed it.

The FBI says the matter remains under investigation.

Acting U.S. attorney Michael Sherwin said after the attack that some of the thefts might have potentially jeopardized what he described as “national security equities.”

Investigators are trying to determine whether a laptop or hard drive was stolen from Nancy Pelosi’s office with the intent of giving it to the Russians. (J. Scott Applewhite/The Associated Press)

Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill, confirmed Jan. 8 that a laptop, “that was only used for presentations” was taken from a conference room. 

Williams’ mother, who lives with her in Harrisburg, about 190 kilometres north of the capital, told ITV reporters that her daughter had taken a sudden interest in President Donald Trump’s politics and “far-right message boards.” Her father, who lives in Camp Hill, about 190 km north of the city, told local law enforcement that he and his daughter went to Washington on the day of the protest but didn’t stay together, meeting up later to return to Harrisburg, the FBI said.

FBI officials said they believe Williams “has fled.” Her mother told local law enforcement that she packed a bag and left, saying she would be gone for a couple of weeks. Williams also changed her phone number and deleted a number of social media accounts, the FBI said. Court documents don’t list an attorney for her.

Posted in Arts & Entertainment, Business, Canada, Health, Politics, Top Stories, World

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *