Edward Snowden Slapped With Espionage Charge

Edward Snowden, the whistleblower who released government documents about secret surveillance programs, has been charged with espionage, theft, and conversion of government property, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Snowden, a former contractor for the National Security Agency, is currently in Hong Kong. But perhaps not for long — the United States has requested that Hong Kong detain Snowden on a provisional arrest warrant. (Snowden, however, might not even remain in Asia — should Iceland offer asylum, there are reports that the whistleblower might jet to the country Saturday.)

The 29-year-old released classified memos and documents regarding surveillance in early June in order "to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them." The documents jumpstarted conversation regarding privacy and NSA's right to view personal information.

Hong Kong and the U.S. have an extradition treaty, but Snowden could attempt to fight the U.S.'s request via Hong Kong's courts.