News and Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

TUESDAY - April 6, 2010

GOVERNMENT CONTRACT EMPLOYEE RE-SENTENCED

FOR ASSAULT CHARGE

RALEIGH - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court today United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle re-sentenced DAVID A. PASSARO. PASSARO had been convicted by a federal jury on August 17, 2006, of assault inflicting serious bodily injury.

Mr. Holding commented, “The laws of the United States are a beacon of justice throughout the world. This case demonstrates no one is below or above our laws. Passaro perpetrated a heinous and brutal assault on a defenseless victim. Passaro will pay the price for the crime.”

The assault took place while PASSARO was working as an independent contract on behalf of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) at a forward operating base in Afghanistan. The case was the first charged under a provision of the Patriot Act which extended jurisdiction of United States District Courts to crimes committed by United States civilians on overseas installations. The victim was an Afghan male whom the defendant had been asked to interrogate. The victim died during the course of the interrogation. However, an autopsy was not conducted because of strong cultural objections of the Afghan population. The case was aggressively investigated, under very difficult circumstances, in a joint effort by the CIA - Office of Inspector General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

The re-sentencing was ordered by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and arose out of PASSARO’s appeal of his trial conviction. The appellate court found that “PASSARO received a fair trial from a conscientious jury, in a court that had jurisdiction to try him.” The conviction was affirmed in all respects. The sole purpose of the remand was to require that the District Court further explain its conclusions as to certain aspects of the United States Sentencing Guidelines. The Court did so and imposed a sentence of 80 months imprisonment followed by three years supervised release.

News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.

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