New Indictment Adds 6 Charges Against Leak Suspect, 21

Jack Teixeira was found viewing classified intelligence unrelated to his job over months
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 18, 2023 11:26 AM CDT
Updated Jun 15, 2023 6:50 PM CDT
Leak Suspect Faced Multiple Work Warnings
This artist depiction shows Massachusetts Air National Guardsman Jack Teixeira, right, appearing in US District Court in Boston on April 14.   (Margaret Small via AP, File)
UPDATE Jun 15, 2023 6:50 PM CDT

The Air National Guard member already jailed on suspicion of posting classified information on social media was hit with more charges Thursday. A new indictment adds six counts of illegal retention and transmission of national defense information to the charges facing Jack Teixeira, the Washington Post reports. Conviction on the new charges can bring a prison sentence. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced the indictment, saying in a statement that Teixeira had access to classified defense information "that reasonably could be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to national security if shared."

May 18, 2023 11:26 AM CDT

Jack Teixeira's lawyer wants him released on bond as he awaits trial for allegedly sharing government secrets on the internet, arguing the 21-year-old who lives at home with his parents isn't as scary as the government is making him out to be. According to Brendan Kelley, Teixeira only meant to share information obtained through his job as an IT professional at a military base with a small group of online friends. In a new court filing, however, prosecutors say classified information was posted to "multiple" Discord servers, one of which had at least 150 users, including some admitted foreign nationals, per the Daily Beast and Washington Post. What's more, they say the leaks continued as Teixeira was repeatedly cited for viewing classified intelligence information unrelated to his job.

The Massachusetts Air National Guardsman—who also allegedly kept an "arsenal" of weapons and wrote online about wanting to kill a "ton of people" in a mass shooting, per the Post—was "observed taking notes" on classified material in September and ordered to stop, but was found to be "potentially ignoring the cease-and-desist order" just a month later, according to an Air Force memorandum. He was again found viewing intelligence content in February, per the BBC. The filing also describes chats in which Teixeira boasted of "knowing what happens more than pretty much anyone" and acknowledged that sharing his knowledge "would be the equivalent of what chelsea manning did," referring to the former US Army soldier convicted for sharing classified information with WikiLeaks.

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"The damage the defendant has already caused to the US national security is immense. The damage the defendant is still capable of causing is extraordinary," prosecutors wrote in an earlier filing, advocating for continued detention. They say Teixeira destroyed evidence and may still possess classified documents, making him a potential recruitment target of foreign governments. Teixeira's attorneys counter that these claims are "little more than speculation." Kelley adds that the weapons found in Teixeira's home, described by prosecutors as rifles and "AR- and AK-style weapons," were airsoft guns. Teixeira is to appear before a judge, who will decide whether or not to release him, on Friday. Teixeira's father has vowed to keep him under video surveillance if bond is granted, per the Post. (More Jack Teixeira stories.)

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