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Obama pardons former general charged in Stuxnet leak investigation

Gen. James Cartwright Charged With Making False Statements During Leak Probe Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

President Obama has granted a pardon to retired Marine Corps general James Cartwright, according to The Wall Street Journal. Cartwright was charged with crimes related to leaked information about the Stuxnet computer virus.

The infamous virus, widely believed to be a creation of the United States and Israel, was unleashed on Iranian nuclear centrifuges as part of a government operation codenamed Olympic Games. Cartwright, the government alleged, leaked information to the press about the operation. In October, he pleaded guilty to lying to investigators about speaking to journalists.

Cartwright’s is one of 64 pardons granted by the Obama administration today. The president also commuted sentences for 209 people, including, in the most high-profile example, Chelsea Manning.

During his presidency, Obama gained a reputation as the architect of an unprecedented crackdown on national security leakers. Under sentencing guidelines, Cartwright was facing six months of prison for the charges, although the pardon will preempt sentencing.