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Petraeus to plead guilty for mishandling classified information

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Former CIA Director David Petraeus has reached a plea deal over charges that he gave classified information to his mistress, the Department of Justice (DOJ) said Tuesday.

He will plead guilty to one count of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material, according to DOJ spokesman Marc Raimondi.   

Petraeus and federal prosecutors jointly agreed that he should receive two year’s probation and pay a $40,000 fine as part of his deal. A judge must still accept the agreement and its terms. 

{mosads}The deal allows him to avoid a trial that could make public more details of his extramarital affair with Paula Broadwell, who wrote a biography of Petraeus focusing on his time as a soldier and Army general.

The case appears to have hinged on small black books that Petraeus kept notes in while commanding U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

The DOJ said in a document filed with the court that Petraeus had kept the books, which contained classified information, instead of turning them over to Department of Defense archivists. He then provided them to Broadwell while she was reporting her biography, the department said.

Authorities said no classified material from the books appeared in Broadwell’s biography, “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.”

The Justice Department also said that Petraeus had lied to Federal Bureau of Investigation agents about providing the information to Broadwell.

An FBI investigation revealed the affair between Petraeus and Broadwell, leading him to step down as CIA director in November, 2012.

The affair rocked Washington circles in which Petraeus was seen as a rising star. He led U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, and was hailed as one of the great military minds of his time for developing counterinsurgency tactics.

He was also a shrewd political operator who was seen by some as a potential presidential contender.

But that talk ended when federal authorities found evidence that Petraeus provided classified information to Broadwell.

Since leaving public life, Petraeus has taught at several universities and now works for a private equity firm.

The New York Times first reported the news that Petraeus was close to reaching a deal over the charges. 

This story was updated at 12:32 p.m.

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