British counter-terrorism police say they have opened a criminal inquiry against David Miranda, the partner of journalist Glenn Greenwald. The two men have been instrumental in publishing and investigating the data released by the fugitive former CIA contractor Edward Snowden.
Miranda, a Brazilian, was detained for nine hours at Heathrow airport last week and had his laptop and electronic data storage devices confiscated. Police claim they contained "highly sensitive material, the disclosure of which could put lives at risk."
"The Home Office and police have now seven days to prove that there is a genuine threat to national security," said Miranda's lawyer Gwendolene Morgan.
Snowden remains out of reach of the authorities, who instead are trying to cut off the outlets for his material. This includes British newspaper "The Guardian" which broke the story. Police recently forced its editor to destroy hard disks containing the Snowden documents after he refused to surrender them.