Crime

Air Force disciplines 15 people in classified docs leak investigation

The Air Force found 15 people failed to take appropriate action in ways that contributed to the leak of classified documents earlier this year.

An artist depiction shows Massachusetts Air National Guardsman Jack Teixeira, right, appearing in U.S. District Court
Margaret Small / AP
SMS

The U.S. Air Force disciplined 15 people in connection with an April 2023 leak of classified material, the branch's inspector general said Monday.

The Air Force said 15 people had failed to take action after discovering Airman Jack Teixeira's suspicious behavior.

The investigation showed in some cases, personnel had unsupervised access to classified material. In other cases, when people witnessed improper behavior from Teixeira or were responsible for correcting it, they failed to take appropriate measures.

In one case in 2022, for example, Teixeira is said to have written notes from a classified document on a sticky note. He was confronted about the note, but no action was taken to ensure the note was destroyed and security officials were never fully briefed on the incident.

Those disciplined in the review face a range of actions, from nonjudicial punishment to relieving certain command personnel of their positions.

Pentagon plans tighter controls to protect classified information
Pentagon plans tighter controls to protect classified information

Pentagon plans tighter controls to protect classified information

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin directed that all secure rooms where classified information is stored should get increased levels of security.

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Teixeira, an Air National Guard IT specialist, is accused of leaking classified documents while working in the 102nd Intelligence Wing at Otis Air National Guard Base in Massachusetts. He was arrested in April and is charged with unauthorized retention and transmission of classified national defense information, which falls under the Espionage Act.

No trial date has been set. Teixeira pleaded not guilty to the charges in June.