A former U.S. spy, pardoned by Italy in connection with the CIA kidnapping of a terrorism suspect in Milan, has fled from Italy to the United States fearing for her safety, Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera on Sunday quoted her as saying, Reuters writes.
Sabrina de Sousa is one of 26 people convicted by Italy in absentia over the 2003 abduction of Egyptian cleric Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, but the only one to spend any time in prison for the operation, in which she denies involvement.
De Sousa was still due to carry out community service in Italy until next year after the Italian president commuted her four-year prison sentence but she decided to flee the country after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and CIA Director Gina Haspel visited Rome in October, Il Corriere said.
“I was terrified of the consequences that I could face,” the dual Portuguese-U.S. citizen was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
“The arrival of Haspel in Italy confirmed to the Italian government that the U.S. administration had washed its hands of my case,” she added, without elaborating.
Pompeo visited Italy at the beginning of October, while Haspel met Italy’s secret service heads in Rome on Oct. 9, according to Italian media. So far, no connection between the meetings and the De Sousa case has been reported.