CIA: Bugging Catholic Confessionals

J.M. Porup filed this request with the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States of America.
Tracking #




From: Jens Porup

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

Statistics on the number of times per year the CIA bugs Catholic Church confessionals.

Please interpret "bug" to mean both physical listening devices and hacking cell phones to eavesdrop on any conversations that take place inside of a confessional booth in a Catholic Church anywhere in the world.

Please include a break down of number of incidents per year, per geographic region, and any legal memos or other notes justifying the practice.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.


Jens Porup

From: Central Intelligence Agency

The request has been rejected, with the agency stating that it can neither confirm nor deny the existence of the requested documents.

From: J.M. Porup

In March, 2017, FBI Director James Comey publicly stated that "There is no such thing as absolute privacy in America; there is no place outside of judicial reach...Even our communications with our spouses, with our clergy members, with our attorneys are not absolutely private in America."


This statement constitutes official disclosure that the US government spies on priests, including inside Catholic confessionals.

Improper Glomar.


From: Central Intelligence Agency

A letter stating that the request appeal has been received and is being processed.

From: Central Intelligence Agency

A letter stating that the request appeal has been rejected.