Matthew Bissonnette, who also wrote a best-selling book about the controversial mission to kill Osama bin Laden, allegedly turned over a hard drive that contained a photo of the terrorist mastermind's corpse to authorities, The Intercept reports.
Bissonette is no stranger to legal troubles. The author of No Easy Day was tried in court for publishing the first-hand account of the controversial raid in 2012. He was ordered to pay $4.5 million in 2014 for releasing the book without clearance from the government.
Although he wouldn’t confirm the possession of bin Laden’s photos, Robert Luskin, an attorney who represents the former serviceman, confirmed “the criminal investigation of Mr. Bissonnette for alleged wrongful handling or disclosure of classified information was closed through declination by the DOJ in August 2015.”
In 2013, a federal appear court ruled all images of the dead al-Qaeda leader should be kept sealed, amid fears of backlash.
"[T]his is not a case in which the declarants are making predictions about the consequences of releasing just any images,” the panel stated. “Rather, they are predicting the consequences of releasing an extraordinary set of images, ones that depict American military personnel burying the founder and leader of al Qaeda.”