Edward Snowden has become a sort of folk hero worldwide due to his whistleblower activities dealing with NSA spying. Supporters of Snowden feel he deserves complete amnesty from prosecution for this matter. In the absence of a total amnesty Snowden is not likely to consider returning to the United States under the present laws. Snowden says he has no chance for a fair trial in the United States, reports The Moscow Times on Jan. 24, 2014.
Snowden says he is not interested in returning to the U.S. due to his feelings that he would have no chance for a fair trial under the present laws. In fact his lawyer in Russia says he may ask Russia to extend his temporary asylum. Snowden says he will not return home to the U.S. unless the laws are changed to offer him whistleblower protection. The U.S. Whistleblower Protection Act stops the government from taking retaliatory action against employees who report alleged crimes or misconduct by government agencies. However, this law does not cover security employees or contractors who go public with confidential information.
CBC News has confirmed Snowden has said he will not return to the United States because he has no chance of a fair trial in the U.S. Snowden is presently living in Russia on a temporary one-year visa. He is wanted by the U.S. government for espionage and theft of government property. Snowden says he has always acted in the interest of the American public. However, he has pointed out that under the law which he was charged, the 1917 Espionage Act, he is not allowed to use a public interest defense in the courts. It appears as if Snowden is looking forward to some difficult times dealing with his predicament.