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Army says accused spy did no harm to national security

Richard Mauer

The Anchorage-based soldier being held on suspicion of spying did not leak or send information using the Internet and didn't harm U.S. security, an Army spokesman said Wednesday.

Spc. William C. Millay, a 22-year-old military policeman arrested Friday by Army counterintelligence agents and the FBI, remains in the Anchorage jail under a military detention order.

"Because of the close cooperation between Army Counterintelligence and the FBI, any information that might have been transferred was stopped," an Army spokesman said in an email. "Millay was being observed well before any damage could have occurred."

Lt. Col. William Coppernoll, a spokesman for the Army in Alaska, said he was unable to provide much information about the circumstances of Millay's arrest until charges are filed, which might occur by the end of the week.

But Coppernoll said the Army wanted to dispel rumors widely reported in Internet blogs that Millay's arrest was somehow connected to the case of Pfc. Bradley Manning, under arrest on charges of providing secret diplomatic cables and other documents to the website WikiLeaks.

"While we can't go into any specifics, this is completely different than the Manning case in that it does not involve the transfer of data on computer networks," Coppernoll said in an email.

Millay's unit, the 164th Military Police Company of the 793rd Military Police Battalion, 2nd Engineer Brigade at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, is in the middle of a one-year deployment in Afghanistan. Millay did not go with them when they deployed in March, remaining with the company's rear detachment.

Coppernoll said Millay has served a deployment to Iraq, though not with an Alaska-based unit.

Reach Richard Mauer at rmauer@adn.com or 257-4345.


By RICHARD MAUER
Anchorage Daily News