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FBI AGENT ARRESTED FOR EXCEEDING AUTHORIZATION TO ACCESS SENSITIVE INFORMATION IN FBI DATABASE




FBI AGENT ARRESTED FOR EXCEEDING AUTHORIZATION TO ACCESS SENSITIVE INFORMATION IN FBI DATABASE
FBI AGENT ARRESTED FOR EXCEEDING AUTHORIZATION TO ACCESS SENSITIVE INFORMATION IN FBI DATABASE



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http://newyork.fbi.gov/dojpressrel/pressrel09/nyfo031809a.htm 

United States Attorney Southern District of New York
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 18 , 2009

LEV L. DASSIN, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of 
New York, TERESA GULOTTA-POWERS, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the 
Miami Field Office of the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector 
General ("DOJ-OIG"), and JAMES E. TOMLINSON, the Special Agent-in-Charge 
of the New York Field Office of the DOJ-OIG, announced the arrest today 
of WILLIAM H. SHIRK III, a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation ("FBI"), for repeatedly exceeding his authorization to 
access the FBI=E2=80=99s Automated Case Support System ("ACS"), which contains 
confidential, law-enforcement sensitive information pertaining to both 
historic and on-going criminal investigations, between July 2006 and 
February 2007. SHIRK, 37, is expected to be presented in Manhattan 
federal court later today. According to a criminal Complaint unsealed 
today:

From July 2002 until January 2006, SHIRK was assigned to the FBI Office 
in Tucson, Arizona, where he was assigned to a public corruption 
investigation (the "Investigation") involving a U.S. Customs and Border 
Protection Inspector ("Customs Inspector"). SHIRK began working with a 
confidential informant ("Informant") in connection with the 
Investigation in December 2003 and stopped using the Informant as a 
source of information in July 2005. In February 2006, SHIRK was 
transferred to the FBI's New York Office, where he no longer had any 
investigative responsibilities relating to the Investigation.

In May 2006, because agents in the FBI=E2=80=99s Tucson Office had learned that 
SHIRK might have communicated with a potential target ("Potential 
Target") of the Investigation, a supervisory agent in the FBI=E2=80=99s Tucson 
Office specifically instructed SHIRK to have no further contact with the 
Potential Target and no further involvement in the Investigation. 
Nevertheless, SHIRK continued to contact the Potential Target as late as 
the Summer of 2006, and continued to have contact with the Informant.

ACS records show that on August 21, 2006, SHIRK=E2=80=99s user login was used at 
the New York FBI Office to access ACS. The records reveal that SHIRK=E2=80=99s 
user login viewed three FBI reports related to the Investigation, one 
FBI report pertaining to the Potential Target, and one FBI report about 
information that had been provided to the FBI=E2=80=99s Miami office regarding 
the Informant=E2=80=99s alleged involvement in ongoing crimes. SHIRK contacted 
the Informant and asked the Informant to call him back from a telephone 
number that the Informant did not usually use. SHIRK told the Informant 
that the FBI=E2=80=99s Miami office had received information that the Informant 
was involved in narcotics trafficking and money laundering. SHIRK also 
told the Informant not to worry because SHIRK had taken care of the 
investigation.

SHIRK, of Easton, Pennsylvania, was charged with five counts of 
exceeding his authorization in using a computer to search for and obtain 
information belonging to a department and agency of the United States. 
Each count carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison and a fine 
of the greater of $100,000, or twice the gross gain or loss from the 
offense.

Mr. DASSIN praised the investigative work of the DOJOIG.

This case is being prosecuted by the Office=E2=80=99s Public Corruption Unit. 
Assistant United States Attorney LOYAAN A. EGAL is in charge of this 
prosecution.

The charges and allegations contained in the Complaint are merely 
accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until 
proven guilty.


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