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February 20, 2008

Who does the CIA turn to for protection?

cia.jpgWho pays the legal fees when a CIA official is investigated for destruction of documents? Most likely, it's Wright & Co., a small company that insures CIA, FBI, DEA and other federal employees for legal hazards arising from their work. How many federal employees did Wright & Co. insure before 9/11? 17,000. And how many today? 32,000. Why the jump? Lawsuits and investigations over prisoner detainments and related issues. How much coverage does a typical policy provide? According to the New York Times, up to $200,000 in legal fees for administrative matters like investigations by Congress, an additional $100,000 is available for legal fees in criminal investigations, and up to $1 million in damages in a civil suit. How much does a standard policy cost? About $300 a year and the government pays half the cost for managers.

Bonus question: How can you explain the CIA to your kids? Send them to the CIA Kids' Page, of course.