Federal law enforcement officials have recommended prosecuting retired Army Gen.
The recommendation leaves Atty. Gen.
Petraeus stepped down in November 2012 as head of the CIA after his affair with an Army reserve officer who was writing his biography became public. He allegedly gave the woman,
Until his resignation, Petraeus was seen as a leading political light both at the
Although he admitted the affair and said he had shown "extremely poor judgment," Petraeus said he never gave Broadwell classified material. FBI agents, however, later reportedly found classified material on her computer at her home in North Carolina.
"A recommendation to prosecute has been made, we were up to speed on it," said one U.S. official, asking not to be identified because the investigation is continuing. "The evidence was gathered in the Charlotte, N.C., area, and Washington was aware of it."
Another official, also speaking confidentially, confirmed that prosecutors have asked for approval to file felony charges against the former general. "We've pushed for it, and we're waiting. It's a top DOJ matter," the official said.
Steve Boylan, a spokesman for Petraeus, said the retired general had no comment.
Last month, Sen.
“At this critical moment in our country’s history,
The Justice Department said Friday night it would have no comment on the news reports, first reported in the New York Times.
Robert Barnett, Petraeus' attorney, also declined to comment. "I cannot," he said. "I'm sorry."
Petraeus, during a 2013 speech at USC, offered a public apology for his personal behavior.
"I am also keenly aware that the reason for my recent journey was my own doing," he said. "So please allow me to begin my remarks this evening by reiterating how deeply I regret — and apologize for — the circumstances that led to my resignation from the CIA and caused such pain for my family, friends and supporters."
The case against Petraeus began by accident. An FBI agent was investigating threatening emails to
Investigating further, the agent discovered Broadwell's affair with Petraeus.
Petraeus is credited with drafting the military's counterinsurgency doctrine. After serving as commander of U.S.-led forces in Iraq, he led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring from the Army in 2011 to become CIA chief.