An alert reader catches me in an error in my parsing of the Espionage Act. I recited one of the elements of the offense as “reason to know that the information could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation.” In fact, the phrase is “reason to believe.”
That’s actually an easier element to prove, since it’s possible to “believe,” but not to “know,” something that isn’t true. So the prosecution merely would merely have to show that the defendant had reason to believe that the information could be used to damage the country. That’s obviously true about an undercover CIA identity.