UNITED STATES—On April 14, Airman 1st Class, Jack Teixeira, 21, made his first appearance in U.S. District Court in Boston, Massachusetts after being charged with unauthorized retention and transmission of national defense information and unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents-material. He did not enter a plea while in court.
Teixeira’s father could be heard shouting something to his son, as he was escorted by guards. The defendant shouted something back to his father that was inaudible.
On April 13, the U.S. Attorney General, Merrick Garland announced that the Federal Bureau of Investigations identified and arrested Teixeira of Dighton, Massachusetts. According to a top Pentagon spokesman, Teixeira allegedly leaked scores of highly classified, confidential documents regarding the war in Ukraine presenting a “very serious risk,” to national security.
The Assistant Secretary of Defense for public affairs, Chris Meagher, told reporters that Defense Secretary, Lloyd Austin first became aware on April 13, that a number of classified briefing slides detailing highly confidential information regarding the U.S. military’s efforts in the war in Ukraine. Intelligence involving other nations was also leaked.
Federal agents arrived in an armored truck to arrest Teixeira at his North Dighton, MA home. Teixeira was at home. He was dressed in a t-shirt, gym shorts, and sneakers.
Aerial footage of the arrest shows Teixeira, with his fingers laced behind his head, walking backward toward the armored vehicle. An officer on watch could be seen on the turret looking on as the soldier was handcuffed and taken away. He was arrested without incident.
Authorities reported one of the leaks one week ago when the classified information was posted on social media.
Reports indicate that this is the largest breach in national security since the Wikileaks website shared some 70,000 classified documents in 2010.
Airman 1st Class Teixeira joined the Air National Guard in 2019. He worked as a Journeyman and on Cyber Transport systems as an IT Specialist at Otis Airforce Base in Dighton, Massachusetts.
John Kirby, the National Security Council Spokesman for The White House, was asked if the U.S. was bracing for more online releases.
Kirby replied, “The truth and the honest answer to your question is that we don’t know., and is that a matter of concern to us? you’re darn right it is. At this point, we don’t know who’s behind this. We don’t know what the motive is.”
Attorney General Merrick Garland indicated Teixeira was wanted “in connection with an investigation into alleged unauthorized removal, retention, and transmission of classified national defense information.