Intel chairman: Charge Snowden with murder

The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee wants to charge Edward Snowden with murder.

The former government contractor who leaked details about secret programs of the National Security Agency (NSA) and its British counterpart is a “traitor,” Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) told members of Parliament in the British House of Commons on Tuesday, according to reports.


"We are treating him, as I would argue, [like] the traitor that he is," Rogers added. "And by the way — and this is important — I would charge him for murder."

Snowden is currently living in Russia and faces espionage charges in the United States that could land him in prison for decades.

Snowden's critics in the Obama administration and on Capitol Hill have worried that his leaks — which have prompted a massive global debate about the reach of American and British surveillance programs — have tipped off terrorists for ways to avoid detection and carry out their plots.

"He took information that allows force protection, not only for British soldiers, but for U.S. soldiers, and made it more difficult for us to track those activities,” Rogers said. “Meaning it is more likely that one of those soldiers is going to get their legs blown off or killed.”

"Anybody that provides information to the enemy is a traitor, period, pure and simple."

Rogers, who is stepping down from Congress this year to launch a talk radio show, has repeatedly criticized Snowden and said he may have been working with Russian intelligence agents to steal American secrets.

"Many don't find it odd he is in the loving arms of an SVR [Russia's foreign intelligence agency] agent right now in Moscow,” Rogers added. “I do."

Snowden's lawyers had previously been in discussions with the U.S. to try and arrange a way for him to return home, but those negotiations seem to have stalled. 

This summer, Russia extended Snowden's residency permit through 2017.