I’m still amazed that this could happen IN the White House. Truly disturbing.
More about the Philippine spy from the Washington Post:
Joseph Estrada, the former Philippine president who was forced from office four years ago by mass demonstrations, has acknowledged receiving documents from Aragoncillo while the suspect was still in the Marines. Estrada told a Philippine newspaper last month that Aragoncillo had passed material while visiting him at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Manila, where the former president was receiving treatment while being held on corruption charges from 2001 through 2003. Part of that stay would coincide with Aragoncillo’s time in Cheney’s office.
Estrada, who remains under house arrest, said in a statement published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer that the information was “non-classified” and that he was unaware of any illegal activity by Aragoncillo.
“Why would they include me in that mess? I know nothing about issues involving him,” Estrada told the newspaper.
Well, that seems like a very suspect denial given the circumstances…
And let’s not forget the second suspect in this case, Michael Aquino.
The possibility that Leandro Aragoncillo was passing the material while stationed as a U.S. Marine security official at the White House marks a dramatic expansion of the case against him and a former Philippine police official, Michael Ray Aquino. Both were arrested and charged in federal court in Newark last month with sending classified information obtained this year to the Philippines — more than two years after Aragoncillo left the White House and went to work as an FBI intelligence analyst.
More on Aquino here (HT: Michelle Malkin).
And more on that $500,000 debt that Aragoncillo has:
Christie would not say what motivated the suspects. Buch said that Aragoncillo had $500,000 in debts, mostly mortgages on rental properties, and that Aquino had been investigated in the Philippines in connection with a conspiracy to murder two people.
The FBI suspended Aragoncillo on Monday. Leslie Wiser Jr., the special agent in charge of the FBI’s New Jersey operations, said it was “disheartening” that one of the agency’s workers faced such charges.
Aragoncillo retired honorably as a gunnery sergeant in September 2004 after 21 years in the US Marine Corps. Wearing blue jeans and a T-shirt, with closely cropped hair, he stood nearly at attention during his brief court appearance.