FACT CHECK: Did A State Department Employee Recently Plead Guilty To Treason?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook more than 700 times claims former State Department employee Candace Claiborne recently pleaded guilty to treason.

“Candace Claiborne, Clinton’s State Department Spokesperson plead guilty to TREASON, yesterday,” reads the caption. “She is a CHINESE SPY. February 22, 2020 — they’re getting closer!”

Verdict: False

Claiborne pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. in April 2019, after sharing information with Chinese agents in exchange for money and gifts. There is no evidence she worked directly with Hillary Clinton or as her “spokesman” while Clinton was secretary of state.

Fact Check:

Claiborne began working at the State Department in 1999 as an office management specialist and had overseas postings in Beijing and Shanghai, among other places, according to Fox News.

From 2011 to 2016, she passed Chinese intelligence agents non-classified documents in exchange for money and gifts, according to a Justice Department press release. The FBI arrested Claiborne in March 2017.

The viral post, however, gets key facts about Claiborne’s case wrong. (RELATED: Did Hillary Clinton Lie To The FBI?)

Claiborne pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the U.S. — not treason, as the post incorrectly suggests — and was sentenced to 40 months in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $40,000, per the Justice Department press release. Prosecutors dropped other counts of felony obstruction, lying to the FBI and wire fraud after she accepted that plea deal, according to The Washington Post.

The date of her guilty plea is also wrong. Claiborne accepted the plea deal in April 2019 and got sentenced three months later in July.

While Claiborne was employed at the State Department during Clinton’s tenure, there is no evidence she worked as Clinton’s “spokesperson” or worked directly with her in any capacity.

We rate the post false.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Reporter
Follow Brad on Twitter Have a fact check suggestion? Send ideas to [email protected]
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Trending

FACT CHECK: Did Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Say, 'There Are Homeless People Out There Who Can't Pay Their Mortgage'?
FACT CHECK: Did Nancy Pelosi Hide $25 Million For Congressional Pay Raises In The House Coronavirus Stimulus Bill?
FACT CHECK: Did Congress Deny A $336 Increase In Social Security But Approve An $8,872 Increase In Its Salaries?
FACT CHECK: Are George Soros And Adam Schiff In-Laws?