If you believe his version of events, Sigurdur “Siggi” Thordarson was a teenage globetrotting representative of WikiLeaks and confidante of Julian Assange, when he decided to share their secrets with the FBI. According to WikiLeaks, Thordarson never had a significant role in their organization, but he did steal tens of thousands of dollars in t-shirt and other merchandise revenue. Most of the people who have dealt with Thordarson on a personal level warn that he is not to be taken at his word. Icelandic parliament member and WikiLeaks supporter Birgitta Jónsdottír goes so far as to call him a pathological liar.
It’s important to keep all that in mind when reading David Kushner’s Rolling Stone piece that relies in part on information provided by Thordarson. Thordarson admits that he decided to reach out to the FBI in August 2011, as WikiLeaks was publishing documents that had been passed to them by Hector Xavier Monsegur a.k.a. Sabu. Sabu was an Anonymous-affiliated hacker who helped found LulzSec, but by that time he was working for the FBI himself.
Both Sabu and Thordarson spent a great many hours trying to set up and entrap one another and even coax the the other to agree to meet in person to enable a bust that they hoped would please their FBI masters. It wasn’t until much later when Sabu was outed as a rat in the press that Thordarson realized why his FBI handlers had been indifferent to those efforts and how futile they were.
Like the American Earth Liberation Front snitch Frank Ambrose, Thordarson held onto a large trove of potential evidence in case he should ever choose to use it to his personal advantage. Numerous hard-drives, documents, chat logs, and data relevant to WikiLeaks and Assange were handed over to the the FBI. Thordarson claims that he decided to become an informant after considering he could possibly face arrest and prison for his work with WikiLeaks, but also because he thought it would be exciting to be a spy for the FBI.
Thordarson’s special relationship with U.S. authorities didn’t seem to help him when he, now 21-years-old, was convicted of improper sexual misconduct with a minor. He is currently appealing an eight month sentence and fighting numerous unrelated criminal fraud charges. Like the FBI, Sigurdur Thordarson has a very flexible relationship with the truth, but that’s not likely to serve either of them well should he be called to testify against any of the WikiLeaks activists.