Who Is Jack Teixeira, 21-Year-Old National Guardsman Arrested In Leak Of Classified Documents?
On Thursday, the FBI arrested a 21-year-old member of the Massachusetts Air National Guard, who is suspected of leaking dozens of classified documents containing national security secrets, including surveillance information by the United States on Russia and partners like Ukraine and Israel.
Airman First Class Jack Teixeira was taken into custody after federal authorities claimed he posted sensitive military intelligence on an online Discord chat group named Thug Shaker Central.
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On Thursday afternoon, F.B.I. agents, some of who were heavily armed, arrived at the home of Teixeira’s mother in Dighton, Massachusetts. Law enforcement officials had previously learned that Teixeira possessed multiple weapons.
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Later, Teixeira was seen being led away from home by two armed men.
Attorney General Merrick Garland publicly announced Teixeira’s arrest and stated he would be arraigned at the Federal District Court in Massachusetts.
The events called into question how a junior airman had access to intelligence reports from the C.I.A. and the National Security Agency and why no protection measures were implemented.
A motive remains unknown, but authorities do not suspect Teixeira was a whistleblower.
Several months ago, Teixeira, who went by the name O.G. on Thug Shaker Central, uploaded hundreds of pages of U.S. intelligence briefings into the chat group. The invitation-only group was known for discussing guns, military equipment and video games.
According to members of Thug Shaker Central, the documents received more attention when one of the members posted a few of them onto a public online forum where they were then spotted by journalists.
The same documents began appearing on Twitter and Telegram and got the attention of Washington and Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III. On Tuesday, Austin spoke publicly about the leaks but found it difficult to explain why the Defense Department took so long to learn about them after they first were posted on Discord.
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