FILE PHOTO: The logo of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency is shown in the lobby of the CIA headquarters in La..InternationalIndiaAfricaOleg BurunovThe past fifteen years have seen several cases against CIA officers opened in connection with sexual assault allegations.The US House Intelligence Committee is investigating the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)’s alleged mishandling of sexual assault and harassment cases regarding its workforce, an American media outlet has reported.
The outlet cited attorney Kevin Carroll as saying that since January, at least three female CIA employees have approached the committee to claim that the agency is discouraging women from making sexual misconduct complaints.
According to Carroll, the CIA is making it difficult for alleged victims to speak to law enforcement.The attorney also said his client has told him that as many as 54 women at the CIA over the past decade have said they have been victims of sexual assault or misconduct by colleagues, and that their cases were improperly handled.
"This is the CIA’s Me Too moment," Carroll added, in a nod to the movement against sexual harassment, which began to spread virally as a hashtag on social media following the exposure of numerous sexual-abuse allegations against former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein in October 2017.
Separately, unnamed sources were quoted by the US news outlet as saying that committee chair Mike Turner and ranking member Jim Himes earlier sent a letter to CIA director Bill Burns to ask for the agency’s help looking into the issues.Burns responded within 24 hours and promised full cooperation, according to a senior CIA official.They also rejected Carroll’s claims that the agency had tried to prevent the female CIA employees from speaking to Congress.
"This idea that there’s some threatening [of] officers who want to talk to HPSCI, that’s not true. We haven’t threatened or blocked anybody,” the official said, referring to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.
Over the past fifteen years, several cases related to alleged sexual assault by CIA officers have provoked public uproar. In 2021, ex-CIA officer Brian Jeffrey Raymond pled guilty to a number of federal charges, including sexual abuse. He was accused of drugging and sexually assaulting dozens of women he had met on dating apps over a 14-year period.In 2009, two women said they were drugged and raped by Andrew Warren, the CIA’s former station chief in Algeria, who finally pled guilty to the assault and served five years in prison.