The National Bureau of Investigation (KRP) has been granted permission to search devices confiscated from Laura Halminen, one of two journalists who wrote about the operations of the Finnish Defence Intelligence Agency (VKoeL) in Helsingin Sanomat last December.
The much-discussed article referenced classified documents to shed light on the staff and operations of the secretive agency based in Tikkakoski, Central Finland.
Helsingin Sanomat reports yesterday that the permission to search the confiscated devices for data was granted by the District Court of Helsinki on Wednesday. The permission, the court ruled, was necessary to locate and obtain documents that had likely been leaked illegally to the newspaper.
Halminen has made a complaint about the house search, arguing that it had jeopardised the protection of sources.
The District Court of Helsinki, however, ruled last week that the house search was legal and estimated that there is no reason to believe the seizure has compromised or will compromise the protection of sources.
A total of 19 items – including a laptop, notepad, tablet computer and several flash drives – were confiscated from the home of Halminen in Helsinki on 17 December. The latest ruling enables investigators to search the confiscated items for data under the supervision of a search representative, whose task is to ensure the investigators do not access any data that fall within the scope of the protection of sources.
KRP has opened a pre-trial investigation into a possible disclosure of national secrets in connection with the article published by Helsingin Sanomat.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Timo Jaakonaho – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi