Brit software engineer convicted of leaking highly sensitive military information

A British software and analytical engineer who deliberately leaked highly sensitive military information and data, has been convicted of offences under the Official Secrets Act.

After initially pleading not guilty, Simon Finch, 50, of Southport, pleaded guilty part-way through his trial at the Old Bailey on Monday, November 9, to a series of offences.

Finch admitted: recording information for a purpose prejudicial to the safety of interests of the state; making a damaging disclosure relating to defence, and failing to comply with a notice requiring disclosure.

He is due to be sentenced at the Old Bailey today, Tuesday, November 10.

Commander Richard Smith, Head of the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command, said: “Finch carried out this act due to a perceived injustice against him.

“In doing so, he not only put at risk the safety and security of our military personnel, but also put at risk the safety and security of the UK as a whole.

“He also sought to frustrate our investigation further by refusing to provide passwords to his digital devices.”

The matter came to police attention after Finch emailed a number of people in October 2018 – one of whom contacted authorities upon receipt of what appeared to be sensitive military information.

Within the email were details of alleged grievances and injustices Finch felt he had suffered at the hands of UK state authorities, including police, health services and some of his former employers, which included companies contracted by the Ministry of Defence to work on weapons systems and software projects.

Finch said in his email that “in order to redress these perceived injustices against him”, he had set about documenting, from his memory, details of highly sensitive information on weapons systems that he had previously worked on.

He then claimed to have sent the documents and information to foreign and hostile states and embassies.

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Written by

Tara Rippin

Tara Rippin is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News, and is responsible for the Costa Blanca region.
She has been in journalism for more than 20 years, having worked for local newspapers in the Midlands, UK, before relocating to Spain in 1990.
Since arriving, the mother-of-one has made her home on the Costa Blanca, while spending 18 months at the EWN head office in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
She loves being part of a community that has a wonderful expat and Spanish mix, and strives to bring the latest and most relevant news to EWN’s loyal and valued readers.

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