Following Colombia Scandal, Secret Service Agents Stripped of Security Clearance

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It looks like the 11 Secret Service agents and officers currently on leave in the Colombian sex scandal have been stripped of their security clearances in addition to being suspended from work, at least according to a CBS report sourced to an unnamed "law enforcement official." Basically, that means they don't get to go into areas where security clearance is required, but it's also a harbinger of possible further discipline to come.

One detail that's a little unclear is whether they've also had their equipment taken from them. A CBS story at 4:14 p.m. reported that: " 'They are 'do not admit' and their equipment has been taken,' according to a law enforcement official." But the story from 4:16 p.m. reported that "a law enforcement official who spoke to CBS News says the agents and officers do not admit that any equipment had been taken." Those two sentences read like they mean opposite things.

But what is clear from the move is that it shows the Secret Service is taking seriously the investigation into its personnel, with whom President Barack Obama said he'd be angry if it turned out the allegations they brought prostitutes back to their Cartagena, Colombia, hotel rooms. The CBS report joins a Guardian story reporting the Pentagon thinks more than the originally reported five military members had also joined in the Colombian debauchery. 

We also learned a bit more about what roles the Secret Service members played. According to CBS: "Two Secret Service supervisors were among the 11 involved. A top official confirms that the group also included three members of the Counter-Assault Teams, the agents who wear black commando outfits and carry large weapons."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.