Sandy Burger Fined $50,000 for Smuggling Documents

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Former Clinton administration national security advisor Samuel "Sandy" Berger was caught smuggling classified terrorism-related documents out of the National Archives last year. On 8 September 2005 federal Magistrate Judge Deborah A. Robinson ordered Berger to pay a $50,000 fine as well as $6,905 in administrative costs, give up his security clearance for three years, serve a two year probation, and perform 100 hours of community service as penalty for smuggling classified documents back in 2003.

This last April Berger pled guilty to unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents and Justice Department lawyers had proposed only a $10,000 fine. But in passing sentence Judge Robinson declared that the proposed fine "is inadequate because it doesn't reflect the seriousness of the offense."

Berger told the court that he let "considerations of personal convenience override clear rules of handling classified material." He accepted the judgement and does not plan to appeal the sentence.

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