Six in hot water at State over lost notebook PC with classified data

Six in hot water at State over lost notebook PC with classified data

By Tony Lee Orr

The State Department has targeted six Intelligence and Research Division employees for disciplinary action over the disappearance early this year of a notebook PC loaded with highly classified information on weapons of mass destruction.

Disciplinary actions ranging from letters of reprimand to suspension and termination were proposed by the department's Bureau of Human Resources. The proposal followed a Diplomatic Security Bureau investigation, said Richard Boucher, department spokesman. The disciplinary actions have been appealed, he said.

Ambassador J. Stapleton Roy reportedly resigned his position a month earlier than planned to protest the actions after his deputy, Donald Keyser, received a 30-day suspension in connection with the investigation. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright ordered Keyser reassigned, Boucher said.

Boucher disputed reports that Roy resigned in protest over the incident, calling the move an early retirement. Roy had planned to retire next month; instead, his last day was Dec. 5.

The department discovered the notebook, purchased in 1996, missing on Jan. 31 when someone from outside the department asked to use it [GCN, May 22, Page 3]. The notebook remains missing. State has offered a $25,000 reward for information on its whereabouts.

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