Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/01/29/cia_algeria_chief_accused_sexual_assault/

CIA's Algeria chief recalled amid rape allegations

Spy boss laptop seized as evidence

By Austin Modine

Posted in Security, 29th January 2009 22:16 GMT

The CIA's top officer in Algeria has been recalled to Washington amid accusations he drugged and raped two women at his Algiers residence.

The officer, identified in an affidavit as Andrew Warren, was the spy agency's station chief in Algeria from 2007 until late last year. The allegations, first reported by ABC News, surfaced in a criminal court complaint unsealed yesterday in Washington.

An investigation was launched by the US Justice Department after two women separately approached the US Embassy in Algiers and reported the attacks: one in September 2007, the other in February last year. The two women said they became unconscious after receiving what they believe were knockout drugs served to them as drinks by Warren. He has not yet been charged with a crime.

According to court records, Warren told Diplomatic Security investigators that he had engaged in consensual sex with the two women. Warren admitted to having photographs of the two women on his personal laptop, but declined to consent to the seizure or search of his computer. Warren did surrender his cell phone and digital camera, which uncovered multiple photographs of the two women, along with pictures of various other women.

Fearing Warren may attempt to destroy evidence on his computer, DS agents seized his computer – a HP Pavilion DV 2500 - and transported it to Washington for forensic search.

The affidavit states that in a search of Warren's CIA-provided Algiers residence, DS special agents recovered Valium and Xanax, as well as a "handbook on the investigation of sexual assaults."

ABC reports unnamed US officials said the search of Warren's residence also turned up secretly recorded videos that show Warren engaged in sexual acts. One of the alleged victims is reportedly seen on tape in a "semi-conscious state."

The time-stamped date on the videos have lead investigators to broaden the investigation to Egypt, because the date matched when Warren was working in the US Embassy in Cairo, according to ABC.

A copy of the search warrant affidavit for the computer analysis can be found here. ®