Washington: No operational security was breached during the Secret Service sex scandal in Colombia last month, the agency's head told US lawmakers on Wednesday.
"At the time the misconduct occurred, none of the individuals involved in misconduct had received any specific protective information, sensitive security documents, firearms, radios or other security related equipment in their hotel rooms," Secret Service director Mark Sullivan told a US Senate hearing.
Meanwhile on Wednesday, the Washington Post said four implicated Secret Service employees had decided to fight their dismissal and argue they were made into scapegoats "for behavior that the Secret Service has long tolerated."
The elite agency has been scrambling to contain fallout from the mid-April affair involving prostitutes and its agents in the Colombian city of Cartagena, where President Barack Obama attended the Summit of the Americas.
More than two dozen Secret Service agents and military personnel, tasked with preparing security for President Obama's high-profile visit, were sent home as a result. Nine Secret Service agents have since left the agency as it seeks to repair its tarnished reputation.
"We reached out to the intelligence community as well to cast as wide a net as possible in determining if there was any type of breach in operational security as a result of the incident," Mr Sullivan told lawmakers. "No adverse information was found as a result of these inquiries."
As a result of the scandal, the Secret Service recently tightened rules for its employees.
Story first published:
May 23, 2012 21:56 IST