Jack Teixeira, the young man suspected of being behind one of the biggest leaks of Pentagon documents in the last decade, has been indicted this Friday for crimes of transmitting and extracting classified information.
The 21-year-old has appeared before Massachusetts District Court Judge David Hennessy, who has read the charges against him. Specifically, Teixeira has been charged with two crimes: unauthorized retention and transmission of national defense information and unauthorized extraction of classified information and defense materials. If found guilty, he could face a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.
President Joe Biden has applauded the quick action of federal agents in the arrest of Teixeira and has assured that, although the “validity” of the leaked documents is still being determined, he is taking measures to strengthen the protection of classified information. “I have given instructions to the military forces and the intelligence community to take measures to further secure and limit the distribution of sensitive information,” the president said in a statement collected by the Efe news agency.
Biden has assured that measures are being taken to strengthen the protection of classified information
In an affidavit presented to the court by FBI investigators, it is stated that Teixeira had had an accreditation since 2022 that authorized him to access material marked as top secret. The document details that the young man began to publish the information on social networks in December of last year, first as verbatim transcripts and then through images of documents marked as classified.
Although in the affidavit the researchers do not specify the platform used, information from the newspapers The New York Times y The Washington Post they pointed out that he published the documents first in a chat on the Discord platform. One of the documents, the statement confirmed, contained information on the “state of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, including troop movement on a particular date.”
The FBI has explained in court that it interviewed one of the Discord users on April 10, the social network where Teixeira published the information. In the interview, the user said that Teixeira had revealed to him that he decided to start taking pictures of the documents because he feared he would be caught transcribing them at his workplace.
On April 12, Discord turned over the information he had on Teixeira to the FBI. The young man, according to the documents, worked in the area of computer defense at the National Guard base on Cape Cod, in Massachusetts, and had been part of the US forces since September 2019.