By Kevin Gosztola, Firedoglake.com, published on June 15, 2105.
Jeffrey Sterling was notified last week that he will be imprisoned in Littleton, Colorado for his three and a half years – that is about 900 miles from his family – at least a 12-hour drive beginning June 16, 2015.
Economically devastated by the prosecution process, now in order for him to experience family support, it will cost them hundreds of dollars for air travel whenever they make the trip to visit him in prison.
The Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has a soft policy about attempting to designate inmate facilities that are within 500 miles of their release residence. When they don’t do this, there is no mechanism in place for an inmate to hold BOP accountable for not following the policy. There are actually three facilities that fall within this general policy that were apparently not considered.
This article compares Sterling’s incarceration to that of other individuals incarcerated for leaks: Stephen Kim and John Kiriakou. Kim was placed in a minimum-security camp in Cumberland, Maryland. Kiriakou, however, who was supposed to be placed in a minimum-security facility, ended up in a low security facility because someone designated him as a “threat to the public safety.” BPO made the determination based on “espionage, treason, sabotage or other related offenses.” John Kiriakou did not commit espionage since all of those charges were dropped. Even though Kiriakou challenged the placement, he was unable to convince BOP they were wrong.
Sterling faces the same low security placement that Kiriakou received. The most evident difference between Kim and both Kiriakou and Sterling is that Kiriakou and Sterling turned to the public for support during their prosecution, so retaliation.
There is also a short documentary, “The Invisible Man: CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling,” that will give you the bigger picture on what Sterling went though during prosecution efforts.