Press Freedom Defense Fund Statement on Charges Against Natalie Mayflower Sours Edwards

The Press Freedom Defense Fund is deeply outraged by the recent charges brought against US Treasury employee Natalie Mayflower Sours Edwards. Ms. Edwards is alleged to have played a role in exposing the purported financial wrongdoings of Paul Manafort, Richard Gates, Maria Bitna, The Russian Embassy, and Prevezon. The leaked information in question shed light on the 2016 Russian interference in the US election, and provided the public with critical information.  

This is the third leak prosecution pertaining to the Russia-Trump investigation since Trump took office in 2017, and shows the Justice Department’s process of investigating leaks is completely politicized.

Ms. Edwards is the latest government employee to be arrested for allegedly leaking to the media in this administration’s self-proclaimed “war on leaks.” The actions of this administration are a politicized attempt to stifle critical reporting.

The fund’s mission is to help protect whistleblowers and journalists facing these kinds of government attacks. Our thoughts and concerns go out to Ms. Edwards, along with Buzzfeed reporters Jason Leopold and Anthony Cormier, as the government continues its assault on journalists and whistleblowers exposing corruption.

James Risen
Director, Press Freedom Defense Fund

Kate Myers
Deputy Director, Press Freedom Defense Fund


First Look Media’s Press Freedom Defense Fund supports journalists, filmmakers, whistleblowers and news organizations pursuing legal fights where a substantial public interest, freedom of the press, or related human and civil rights are at stake. Grants under this program are used to fund challenges to policies or actions that restrict press freedom and obstruct access to essential information in the United States and around the world.

Press Freedom