Pentagon Leak Suspect was Warned Repeatedly About Mishandling Classified Documents

May 18, 2023

Jack Teixeira, the member of the Massachusetts Air National Guard charged in the leak of dozens of Pentagon documents, was repeatedly warned by his superiors about the mishandling of classified material, Department of Justice attorneys disclosed in court papers.

The DOJ attorneys made the disclosure while urging a magistrate judge to keep Teixeira behind bars while he awaits trial.

Lawyers for Teixeira are urging the judge to release him to his father’s home, noting that the 21-year-old didn’t flee when news outlets began publishing his name shortly before he was arrested on April 13.

Teixeira has not yet entered a plea after being charged in April with unauthorized detention and transmission of national defense information, as well as unauthorized removal of classified information and defense materials.

DOJ prosecutors said in their filing that Teixeira continued to leak documents even after superiors admonished him on at least two separate occasions for what they called “concerning actions” by the National Guardsman.

A memo from September of last year from the Air National Guard 102nd Intelligence Wing says that Teixeira was observed taking notes on classified intel and putting those notes in his pocket. He was instructed at the time to no longer take notes in any form on classified information. 

A second memo the next month asserts that a superior was notified that Teixeira was “potentially ignoring the cease-and-desist order on deep diving into intelligence information” from September. That second memo goes on to say that Teixeira preceded to ask “very specific questions” during a meeting, to which he was told again to not take any “deep dives” into classified intel. 

A third memo in February asserts that Teixeira was yet again observed looking at information “that was not related to his primary duty and was related to the intelligence field.”

In their court filing, DOJ prosecutors wrote, “The Defendant even continued to share information with his online associates, defying these admonishments and taking further efforts to conceal his unlawful conduct.”

They further assert in their filing that one of the servers on the social media platform where they say Teixeira posted classified information had at least 150 users at the time, and “now may have many more users that are actively seeking access to information.”

Teixeira faces up to 25 years in prison if found guilty of the charges against him under the Espionage Act.

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